Winning applicants are selected not only for their competence and confidence, but also their clothing. What you wear is pivotal to the outcome of your interview. Of course, there are no cut-and-dry solutions here.
The right outfit depends on the organization and position you’re applying for. Some demand nothing less than tailored suits. Others prefer candidates to show up in tees and jeans. Knowing the corporate culture of the company can give you an idea of their expectations.
Whether it’s formal, casual or somewhere in between, the following 6 style tips will help you dress for success.
Learn the Basics
There are several core elements of interview attire that can provide a foundation for your outfits. In the corporate world, your safest bet is a suit. Each piece should fit correctly and be free of stains. Key components include:
- Long-sleeved shirt in white or matching tone
- Solid colors such as navy and dark gray
- Simple tie and socks
- Neat and short nails
- Portfolio or briefcase
- Minimal jewelry
- Leather belt
For interviews that require business casual clothing, you should still default to a suit. Startup casual lends more to jeans. Just make sure that your denim is plain, clean and doesn’t have holes. Graphic tees are best kept at home.
Outshine the Competition
Take a look at the two positions above the one you’re applying for. What are their dress codes? By following those style guidelines, your ensemble will show that you’re aiming high and planning to move up the ladder.
For example, applicants interviewing for a supervisor role at the local supermarket may wear a polo and khakis. You can subtly stand out by impressing the manager with a crisp button-up and trousers. If the other applicants are wearing sneakers, stepping into a sleek pair of Oxfords or Derbys will make all the difference. Remember to:
- Research uniform standards for the job and industry
- Use higher positions for ideas
- Avoid going overboard
Keep it Modern
Just like body language, your fashion choices speak volumes for who you are and whether you’re a suitable candidate. Wearing hand-me-downs or otherwise outdated clothing to an interview says nothing good. Aim to look fresh and stylish without appearing too casual. This indicates that you’re forward-thinking and in-touch with the times.
Tech startups and the like are particularly fond of more trendy appearances. That said, balance is important. You don’t want to look like you just left high school. Subtle additions to the standard uniform can elevate your ensemble. For instance, smaller statement pieces convey that you mean business while still adhering to dress codes.
Something luxurious and professional like a stand-out Versace ring is a great option. You will see that there is a large collection of different Versace Rings to choose from, including understated silver pieces that are perfect for interviews.
Don’t be the applicant who sweats or shivers through their interview because they didn’t check the weather. Prepare in advance and work around the climate. Similarly, it’s best to stay away from bright colors and glaring patterns. They can elicit negative feelings that make it more difficult for interviewers to like you. Here are some additional tips:
- Buy your shoes early so that you have time to break them in
- Avoid wearing clothes that don’t fit or cause itching
- Wash new garments to eliminate chemical smells
- Make sure to remove all tags and stickers
- Iron any creases and cut off loose threads
- Polish leather footwear the night before
Equip and Remove
In addition to attire, you should also bring all the necessary tools and accessories that may be required for the interview. This shows that you’re organized and you have your life together. Gather the following items:
- Company location and directions
- Name and number of the interviewer
- Your identification
- Notepad and pen
- Spare copies of your CV
- Samples and references
- Laptop to showcase your work if necessary
- Breath mints to freshen up before walking in
There are also a couple of things that might be better to leave at home or in the car. This includes:
- Piercings and jewelry if you have a lot
- Chewing gum
- Coffee or soda
- Cover tattoos when possible
Finally, remember to consider your own appearance. Hair should be neat, clean and ideally on the shorter side. The style shouldn’t distract your potential boss or make him worry about how it might affect the company image. Dedicate some time in the morning to getting a clean shave or trimming your beard to remove stray hairs as well.
Putting together a winning ensemble for your upcoming interview is easier than it seems. All you need is some know-how and the right components. Put in the effort and your chances of getting hired will be much higher.