Dress for Success

What you’re wearing might seem like a small part of landing a job, but making a winning impression with your wardrobe is more important than you think. Studies continually show that within the first seven seconds of meeting someone, they will have formed a solid impression of who you are.    How you look and what you wear to an interview can help you feel confident and comfortable too, so you’ll be ready to answer questions about your skills and experience with ease.

With that said, what is the best outfit to wear to a job interview? That depends on the type of job and company with which you’re interviewing.  You want to dress to make the best first impression and comply with the company’s dress code.  That may vary from formal to casual, so here are some tips to dress for success.

First Things First – Be Clean & Well Groomed

While it may go without saying, you want to make sure you show that you put some time and thought into your appearance out of respect for your potential employer and because you’re confident about yourself. 

  • Have clean and trimmed fingernails
  • Take care not to have body odor, but don’t overdo it with cologne or perfume
  • Be sure to have fresh breath, but do not have gum or candy in your mouth
  • If you don’t know the company’s policy on tattoos and facial piercings, it’s best to cover them up and take them out until you know what’s acceptable in the workplace
  • Make sure your hair is properly combed and styled.
  • Men should make sure facial hair is neatly trimmed.

Dress for Success

  • If you need to dress in business wear, a well-fitted gray or navy two-piece suit, a shirt/blouse makes a great first impression.
  • If the company is business casual, you could wear dark or seasonable trousers and a shirt and jacket or perhaps just a nice business shirt.  Casual dress standards vary widely, so it may be best to ask what’s appropriate.  You may also be just fine in a pressed, new looking jeans and a nice polo or blouse.
  • If you choose to wear a skirt or dress, skirt shouldn’t be too short and necklines modest.
  • Wear closed-toe shoes.

Remember that your dress is not all that goes into a first impression.  Good posture and a solid handshake is also important, as is making eye contact and smiling, this puts a person at ease and conveys an open and friendly attitude.  Think about what you’re going to wear and take care with your appearance.  This shows your potential employer that you’re serious about the opportunity and you want to make a good impression.  When you look and feel confident, you’ll be ready to tell your interviewer why you’re the best candidate for the job!