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What should I wear to an interview?

Posted on 26/11/2015 by Simon Bruce

It is very important that you make a strong first impression when you walk into an interview. This is why you should take extra care when choosing what to wear. I suggest you follow these simple steps to make sure you impress.
 
Follow these basic steps.
 
When the interview is being set up, ask your recruiter about the dress code in the company inviting you to interview.

  • Dress one level above the company dress code policy: e.g. for men, if they have a business casual policy, wear suit trousers, shirt and a tie and also take a jacket with you. Ladies wear a business skirt and shirt and take a jacket with you.
  • Surprisingly, shoes are one of the first things people check on a person, so make sure you are wearing professional ones. For women, flats or high heels are fine, but remember you are not going out to a club, so keep them appropriate to a business setting. For men, you should be wearing leather shoes to every interview you go to, so make sure they are nicely polished. Also don’t forget about socks. In many cases you may need to remove your shoes at the entrance, so you don’t want holes in your socks at an interview.
  • Jewellery and makeup are areas needing special attention. For men, DO NOT wear any jewellery except a watch (only if it is a professional, silver, gold or leather watch) and if you are married a wedding ring. For women, follow similar advice, keep it professional, only wedding or engagement rings, only one set of earnings if your ears are pierced and maybe a necklace. Makeup is also extremely important; ensure that you keep it light, as heavy makeup just looks bad.
  • Although not clothing, your bag, handbag, notebook are all part of your outfit when you go to an interview. Backpacks are not appropriate, so if you don’t have a professional bag, don’t take one with you. However, if you have a professional notebook with a professional pen (not plastic), I always recommend to take it with you.

Remember, an interview is like a sales meeting and you are the sales person. Look at how you dress and ask yourself, if a salesperson presented themselves like this to me, what would be my first impression?