When you have a big job interview coming up sometimes the greatest anxiety comes not from the preparation for the interview questions but is related to what you should wear to the interview.
First impressions are critical and your style sends a message to the interviewer about who you are, your qualifications for the job, and your understanding of the position.
With that in mind, consider the following tips when preparing what to wear to your next job interview.
Learn what you can about the company
Take a look at the company’s web site and you might see photos of its employees, providing you with some clues about the typical style of dress. Or you might note upcoming special days, such as “blue jean Friday”, cluing you in to the fact that jeans are not considered every day attire. You can also find information about the company and its employees on social media and LinkedIn and these sources can provide valuable information and hints about the dress code at the company.
It’s better to overdress then under dress
Other than wearing a tuxedo to the interview you can’t really go wrong with being slightly overdressed. Wearing a sport coat with a tie is appropriate in many circumstances. Avoid jeans and shirts with logos or messaging on them. These might send an inadvertent message to your interviewer.
Focus on the basics
Wearing a clean white shirt along with a smart pair of pants is a good place to build on. Bring a suit jacket in case the temperature in the building is cold and avoid too many accessories, which can cause you to fidget and play with them during the interview. You can’t go wrong if you focus on classic items of clothing in basic colors such as navy blue, gray, black, or brown.
Wear what you’re most comfortable in
Finally, wear something you love to wear, keeping in mind the points above. When you feel comfortable you’ll be more likely to feel and project confidence to your interviewer and, instead of worrying about an ill-fitting or uncomfortable suit, you’ll be focused on clearly conveying your strengths in the interview.
Take a few minutes to research the company you’re interviewing with, focus on wearing classic styles in basic colors, ensure you wear something you love, and you’ll give yourself an opportunity to stand out in your interview.
Previously published on STAND Magazine
By Dwayne D. Hayes
Photo: Getty Images