© Written By Jimmy Sweeney
President of CareerJimmy and Author of the new,
"Job Interview Secrets"
Dressing for a job interview should be the last thing on your mind as you prepare for a job interview. Though making the right impression is important, the effort that it takes to dress correctly for a job interview is much less intensive than the effort required to say the right things to get the job. Preparing your responses to job interview questions in order to make the most convincing case of your suitability for the job requires that you do plenty of research and thinking. By contrast, dressing for the job interview correctly only requires knowing what to wear and either getting it ready to wear or buying it.
Nonetheless, the question of dressing for a job interview is something that a lot of candidates spend too much mental energy thinking about. To know what to wear, a good rule of thumb is to do the research and asking around to determine what the people working in the company already wear. Your goal as a job interviewee is to wear something just a little bit more dressy and nice than those already in the company. If your target company dresses professionally, that means wearing a suit and tie for a man, and a nice skirt and jacket or pantsuit if you are a woman. Moreover, to fit into the professional setting, it's important to keep your colors basic and neutral, so as to not draw attention away from your personality and interview answers. For that reason, as well you want to keep jewelry and cologne to a minimum and wear your hair conservatively styled.
In offices where employees do not dress professionally, the question of dressing for job interview becomes more complicated. In a creative office, for instance, wearing a suit and tie to an interview might be just as inappropriate at that office as some creative and stylish garb would be in a more conservative environment. For that reason, you will want to learn from either the HR contact who is setting up the interview or from people you know who are familiar with the work place, what is expected in the job interview. But again the principle of dressing just a little nicer than the people in the office still holds true.
Dressing for job interview that is held out of the office or in some informal location might be tricky. In this case, you should use your judgment and simply try to be as appropriate for the environment as possible. The good news is that if you are being invited to interview in a non-professional arena, it's likely the interviewer is already quite impressed with your background and professional experience and simply wants to get a sense of your personality outside the office. If that is the case, be clean, be neat, be appropriate and then stop thinking about what you are wearing and more about how to best show off your personality.
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