Dress for Success Job Interviews

Dressing Up in a Dressed Down World

Office attire has relaxed over the past couple decades.  Where suits were once the norm, khakis and a button down now suffice.

A relaxed office attire is definitely the norm in many creative and technology business environments where comfort is king and individuality is encouraged.

So what happens if you’re interviewing at one of these companies?  Do you dress up or dress down for the interview?  Do you try to look professional or do you try to look like you fit in with their culture?

Many hiring experts agree that no matter what the job, you should always err on the side of caution and dress up.

This may go against the job culture you’re interviewing for, but it’s always best to portray a professional image if you’re not positive on what to wear.

Unless you’re certain that a conservative appearance won’t hurt your chances for a job, then stick to the following:

1.  Basic Accessories.  Men, leave your gold chains and stud earrings at home and stick to a nice watch instead.  Women, a basic set of earrings and a necklace will be sufficient.  You don’t need to impress the interviewer with your selection of hot pink costume jewelry or bracelets halfway up your arm.

2.  Keep it neat and tidy.  Wear you hair neatly groomed.  Lose the dreds and get a sharp haircut before you interview.  Regardless of what job you’re trying to get, a neat clean appearance will always be a bonus.  And women, keep your makeup conservative.  Lose the zebra striped nails and bright red lipstick and stick to a nice, clean look.

3.  Shoes and Bag.  People often will look at shoes to determine what kind of person they’re dealing with.  Shine up those shoes or purchase new ones before you interview.  You don’t have to go with expensive shoes, just make sure they look good.

Also, watch what you’re carrying around.  Get a nice portfolio or briefcase-type bag for your paperwork and necessities that you bring with you to your interview.  Lose the North Face backpack that has been with you since college – look the part and invest in a nice case.

It has been shown in many studies that how you dress affects how you act.  If you look sharp, clean and focused – that is the image your body language will portray and may just tip the balance in your favor.