Job Interview: What to Wear

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Determining what clothes you wear on any day sets your mood and is an important part of showcasing your personality and character. Even more so, what you have on in a job interview can make or break your first impression with a potential employer. Wearing the right clothes should help you feel comfortable in your own skin while keeping your confidence up so you can focus on your strengths and abilities.

Your first point of reference for what to wear on any job interview is what employees at the job you’re interviewing for wear everyday. You main goal with your wardrobe is to show your employer that you’re going to fit in well with the company – and this includes the way you dress.

Though researching what your future co-workers wear to work is a good indicator of how you will need to dress in an interview, it is not the only factor. For example, just because the normal attire in the office is casual wear, does not mean you can go to an interview dressed down. For any first impression, you need to dress to impress. On the other hand, if everyone in the office is wearing a suit and tie, then you’ll need to step it up a notch. Keep in mind however, that if you need to change your attire so drastically that you don’t feel comfortable just being you, that job might not be the right fit for you anyway.

If you have no real point of reference or cannot get a good feel for what your prospective companies work environment will be like– then you should aim higher and dress formal rather than business casual.  The one exception to this rule is if the culture and region of the country your interviewing for has noticeably different standards than the one you’re used to. For example, a black suit and tie will be just average in New York City while wearing that same suit and tie in the South may make you feel out of place and overdressed.

You have the best shot at being successful if you think and dress for one position higher than then one you are actually interviewing for. For a follow up interview, you can keep the same jacket, pants, and shoes and just switch up your dress shirt and tie. Even just changing your tie will give your entire outfit a whole new look.

The best suit choices for the interview will be your classic standard solid colors: charcoal solid, navy solid, gray pinstripe, and navy pinstripe. It’s not a good idea to get creative with your wardrobe in a job interview. Remember it’s not a good thing if the person interviewing you remembers what you’re wearing more than what your qualifications are. Your dress should compliment your professionalism and give you the confidence and respectability to have the attention during the interview drawn to your skills not your shiny shoes.

In summary, dressing the part will help get your foot in the door, but in the end, remember that looking good will only get you so far and you have to back up your style with passion, ability, and substance.

Recommended Suits for your interview:

Navy Suits
Gray Suits

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