Dressing For a Job Interview: Why First Impressions Count

Jul 10, 2012 No Comments by

For those who have not attended many job interviews before, picking an outfit can be daunting. Picking an outfit too casual can give out the message that you aren’t really bothered by the job and dressing too formal can, in some circumstances, backfire also; anybody who has seen the Will Ferrell film Step Brothers will recall how badly his tuxedo went down in an interview for a menial job. Having got past the CV stage simply isn’t enough in this day and age to get a job, particularly if you are one of a few similarly experiences candidates applying for the same position, so it is essential to make an impression that will help you stand out from the pack.

Business Woman

Choosing the right clothes, something which can help make an irreversible first impression, is imperative. Although clothes may seem a small detail in the grander scheme of things they are essential in letting your potential employer know that you are professional and taking the opportunity seriously.

The first thing to do is to work out what appropriate attire is for the employment you are applying for. So, for example, a company dealing in finances may look for their employees to wear a suit and tie every day whereas an internet company may not require such formality and jeans could be deemed fine to wear to work. Make sure you know this dress code if you are offered the job but, even more importantly, make sure you know this before you attend your interview. At some interviews an open collared shirt could be considered more than acceptable but, in some more formal circles and in jobs of incredibly high prestige, nothing short of a tie and jacket would do.

Whilst dressing smart is always a good idea, using bold and brash colours is not always recommended. White, or neutral, coloured shirts are amongst the best choices and sensible, conservative leather shoes should always be chosen over brightly coloured footwear or tatty trainers. Another tip is despite the fact you may think your facial piercings may not detract from your smartness others, particularly your interviewer, may be inclined to disagree. For men, ear rings are the absolute maximum number of piercings that should be displayed. On a similar note, showy jewellery should be kept to a minimum. Mobile phones and chewing gum are two further items that should be left at home and tattoos should also be covered up where possible.

Business Man

Bear in mind that the choice of outfit is not solely for the interviewer’s discretion but is also picked for the impact it will have on you. Who doesn’t feel more comfortable in a smart pair of men’s lace-up shoes coupled with a neatly pressed suit? The outfit is likely to inspire confidence and better poise which will translate itself in the interview and make you feel more professional. Once you have convinced yourself that you are a highly professional and confident individual it will be so much easier in convincing your interviewer. Once you have convinced them, you just need to be able to do the job you applied for!

Kieron Casey is a fashion writer and blogger who advises everybody to invest in a pair of formal shoes for job interviews as well as for day to day living.

Photo credit: Alex France, Victor1558 and The_Warfield.

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