What to Wear on a Job Interview

What to Wear on a Job Interview

The way you dress is a representation of who you are. At least, that's how a hiring manager or employer perceives things. When you show up for an interview, your clothes do all the talking. Just as you need to prepare for the interview by practicing questions and researching the company, you also need to pick out the right outfit. Find out what you should wear on your interview.

Making a Great First Impression

If you have any doubts about the value of your attire, consider this. Your outfit is the first thing the hiring manager sees. It makes a first and lasting impression on the manager. Although it's possible to overcome their initial thoughts, you have the odds stacked against you.

Finding a job is a task that's full of obstacles. So why make your job search more challenging than it needs to be? If you want to improve your odds, you need to dress appropriately.

Dressing well doesn't only make a good impression. On top of that, the attention you pay to your wardrobe shows your professionalism. If your resume is lacking in experience, your outfit could be enough to convince a hiring manager to overlook your shortcomings.

Tips for Picking an Outfit

Before your interview arrives, start picking out your outfit. As you look for what to wear, follow these tips.

Give Yourself Time

Don't wait until the morning of the interview to pick out your clothes. If you don't have an appropriate outfit, you'll need to head to the store and find one. Waiting for the last minute to approach could leave you scrambling to find a suitable outfit.

No one needs added stress on the day of the interview. Likewise, no one wants to be unprepared for their interview. To avoid both situations, pick out your outfit far in advance. If you need to go shopping, do so several days before the day of the interview.

Observe How Others Dress

If you're new to the professional world, you might not know how to dress for an interview. Fortunately, you don't need to guess what's expected of you. You can find out what's acceptable by making your own observations.

Head out to your local coffee shop or business park. When you see someone, write down what you think about them and what they're wearing. For instance, you might see someone in a certain outfit and think they look stylish. Someone else might look confident.

As you observe, look for outfits you should avoid. If a type of clothing makes someone look immature or disorganized, don't wear it on the day of your interview. You may also find valuable information online. If you're in any professional Facebook groups or forums, ask for advice on what to wear. Others could have invaluable insight.

Ask Your Friends for Advice

After you have a few outfits picked out, try them on. Choose two or three friends or family members to share their opinions on the outfits. First, ask them what type of impression the outfit makes. Is it the same impression you're hoping to make? Then, ask if they have any suggestions on how to improve the outfit.

As much as the advice of your friends' matters, your own opinion should trump everything. If you're not confident, you won't come across as a suitable job applicant. It's important to feel good in your clothes.

Find a Power Pose

When you decide on an outfit that makes you feel confident, take things one step further. Try out a few power poses and find one that makes you feel invincible. According to research, a power pose could give you a confidence boost.

Practice your power pose in the mirror. There are various power poses you can choose, but one isn't more effective than another. For a power pose to work, you need to feel confident and capable.

Invest in Yourself

Typically, people hesitate to spend money on their interview clothes. With no guarantee they'll get a job offer, these individuals see buying a new outfit as a waste of money. But this is far from the truth.

A new interview outfit is an investment in yourself and in your future. In giving you confidence, the outfit could be the push you need to get a job offer. It's also something you can reuse on the job search and wear in the office after you're hired.

Borrow Clothing

If you're not in a position to go shopping, ask a friend or family member to borrow clothing. Whether you borrow an entire outfit or a single item, the new addition to your wardrobe can make a difference.

However, make sure whatever you borrow fits you. You shouldn't show up wearing baggy clothes or high pants.

Examples of What To Wear

If you're still unsure about your wardrobe, there are a few basics you can stick to. First, you should know that men and women can stick to gender-neutral outfits. There's no rule that says women need to wear skirts or men need to wear ties. In today's world, it's acceptable to wear gender-neutral outfits in the workplace.

Typically, slacks with a button-up shirt are appropriate for an interview in almost any industry. You can add personality to your outfit with a modern accessory or a pop of color. However, don't wear anything too flashy or bright. It could distract them from you and your assets.

When you pick out your wardrobe, don't forget about your accessories. You should always bring a notepad, pen, and water to your interview. If you don't have the right accessory, you will be left awkwardly carrying your belongings. Pick out a professional briefcase or purse and match it to your outfit. Although you might prefer a backpack, save it for a less formal occasion.

Get Ready to Impress

Are you ready to make a lasting, positive impression on the hiring manager? If so, you need to dress for success. It's time to start picking out your outfit and practicing for the big day.

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