As September arrives and we say goodbye to summer, many of us start to reevaluate our lives. I suppose it’s because we remember the excitement of starting a new school term. Life has the same feel, doesn’t it?
If you’re looking for a new job or you’re a student about to take your first step on the career ladder, you’ll be busy sharpening your CV and crossing your fingers that you’ll get an interview.
One of the most important things to remember is that first impressions really do count. I know from my days interviewing that, very often, I knew how a candidate was going to perform from the moment they stepped through the door. And how you look is crucial.
So, whatever your gender, here are three tips to dress for success in your next interview.
Dress for the role you are going for
If you’re interviewing for a fashion or a creative position then you can step outside of the traditional suit. And if you’re dressing for a non-managerial role then you may be able to go without the suit coat – a pair of slacks, a button up shirt and a tie are likely acceptable.
However, it’s always a good idea, if you’re undecided to overdress for your interview rather than underdress. A suit will always look better than jeans.
Traditional interview wear includes suit trousers or a skirt in a neutral colour, a button-down blouse or shirt, a tie if you’re a male, and a suit coat.
Conceal your body art
This is a tricky one. For some, body art like tattoos and piercings are the way they choose to express themselves. Many companies understand this and they may be perfectly acceptable to have them on show once you have the job. However, when you’re interviewing for a job you may be better off keeping these covered.
Remove your piercings and cover your tattoos if possible. It may also be a good idea to review the company policy on body art so if you do get the job, you show up for work dressed appropriately.
Pay attention to your personal hygiene
Always take the time to shower, shave and present yourself to the interviewer at your personal best. Clean nails, brushed teeth and hair and clean clothes are imperative. It’s also important to make sure you don’t have any body odour.
Skip the perfume and cologne as well. Or if you must wear it, use it sparingly. Some people are sensitive to fragrances and too much can make them feel ill. Certainly not what you want them to remember you for.
Less is more when you’re wearing jewellery, makeup or doing your hair too. You want to look, clean, groomed and professional for your job interview. Save the personal expression for other times.
Looking your best and dressing for success helps you position yourself positively in your interviewer’s mind. Make sure your first impression represents you in the best light.