Dressing professional for your first interview is paramount. First impressions are everything, especially when it comes to impressing a potential employer. Along with preparing for the interview by researching the company and being ready for what the interviewer is going to ask, you also want to be sure that you prepare to dress professionally. Though the employer doesn’t care about your fashion sense, they will care that your professional attire is up to par with their expectations, including the suit, tie, shoes and even belt. Here is some advice to help.
Solid Navy or Black Suit, 2-button, single-breasted, center or side vent, flap pockets, flat front or pleated pant. Year-round, hard finish 2-ply superfine wool worsted fabric. Classic or Modern Fit, depending on your body type. Get the fit that gives you the best professional look. Employers do not care about your fashion savvy, they care that you dress like the professional they seek.
Solid white shirt, semi or spread collar (no button-down collars), 100% cotton non iron, poplin or pinpoint weave, barrel or convertible cuff, regular or tailored fit. Choose a fit that looks best on you. The shirt fabric is just as important as the suit; both garments make a very powerful statement.
The tie completes your outfit and helps make a professional statement about you. It shows creativity. Fabric should be 100% silk, made with 2 to 3 layers of a soft, yet durable linings and interfacing that make the front of the tie smooth, not wavy. Should be lined end-to-end and edge-to-edge. Tie width be 3” to 3 ⅜” in width. Can be a solid, stripe, paisley, neat, medallion or foulard. Best colors are deep reds, burgundy, purple, navy, black and gold. Never cartoon characters or gasoline cans. A tie can make or break your outfit.
Black tie shoes for professional dress, never a slip-on loafer for a job interview. Plain, cap, wing-tip or panel toe. Glove, aniline or calf-skin leather; leather, combination of leather and rubber or rubber sole shoes. Cheap shoes look cheap and can ruin your outfit. Shoes say a lot about you, who and what you are. When you have created a wonderful professional outfit don’t ruin it with the wrong shoes. No corfam shoes. Make sure, shoes are polished, edge dressing on the sides of the sole and heel, no holes in the sole, and heels are not worn down or turned at the heel edge.
Do not wear a vinyl belt. Choose calf-skin, glove leather, aniline or kipskin leather belt. Do not mix belt color with your shoes, example, wear black shoes with a black belt. Choose leather belts and braces similar to your shoes. Belt leather should be similar to your shoes. If you cannot keep your pants up with a belt, then wear braces that button inside your waistband of your suit pant. Like a good belt, choose leather braces that are a similar leather as your shoes and same color. Do not wear suspenders with the metal clips or wear braces and a belt at the same time.
Do not wear short sock that expose your legs. Socks should be long enough not to expose your skin or hairy legs. Do not wear white socks with a black or navy suit. Socks can be a solid or pattern and similar color to suit.
Do not go to interview without shaving, wet hair, dirty or un-manicured fingernails. Do not wear body piercing or have tattoos exposed. Do not splash on cologne. You do not want to cause a sneezing attack with interviewer - you don’t know if interviewer has allergy to cologne. If you use cologne, apply it very lightly. Do not show up with a bushy neck, hair growing down from nostrils and earlobes.
Make sure you have no body odor, nothing is more offensive and a turn-off. Make sure you get this under control if it is a problem. Be clean for the interview.
Interview clothing needs to be clean and pressed, no stains, missing buttons, tears or rips anywhere on your garment. You cannot make a powerful first impression if your clothing looks like it just came from the hamper! First impressions are everything, you don’t get a second chance for first impressions.
If you have an outstanding resume, your dress, appearance and image needs to be no less. You should make a compelling statement to the employer that you are the one they seek. Give reason why they take you over somebody else. Done right, dress, appearance and image may be your edge, when it comes to getting hired. Make it count.
Getting dressed for the Interview cannot be done overnight. There is no substitute for preparation, it is paramount and it shows. Getting dressed for your first professional job interview is more than just getting dressed, it is the complete package you present, consistently, each and every time you meet with the employer. It does make a difference.
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