They say that first impressions are a crucial aspect of a job interview, with interviewers forming an intuition of a candidate in the first few seconds of meeting. But while an effective handshake is vital, so too are first impressions, with the way a person dressing reflecting on how they portray themselves to others.
So how exactly do you style yourself for an interview, and what is the best way to make a good first impression? From suits to skinny jeans, each look you convey will perceive a certain look depending on the impression you want to portray, and the type of environment that you are in, with the outfit you pick representing your interest in the role in which you are applying for, and your overall outward behaviour and bearing.
Dress for the occasion
Wearing a three-piece pinstriped suit may not be the time or the place to ‘style and profile’ in a millennial start-up in Shoreditch that has a relaxed dress code next to the obligatory ping pong table and beer fridge. Knowing who you are dressing for is key in picking the perfect outfit to impress, as is doing the essential research in prepping for that first impression look that you want to portray.
A look that makes you feel good in a job interview
An outfit should make you feel good in a job interview, and above all else, give you the boost you need in giving you the confidence in nailing that interview. While heels may not always be practical, they do give women that extra spring in their step, and we aren’t talking about the extra inch on the heels either. While your wardrobe should cater for who you are interviewing for, it should also best represent you while also showing off your best qualities. When it comes to the interview look, conviction is key.
Be comfortable, but not too comfortable
While its important to feel comfortable in what you wear, you wouldn’t go to an interview wearing your most comfortable onesie or dressing gown either. Ensure that your outfit fits and that you feel good in what you are wearing, but maybe don’t wear those overly baggy trousers that leave you looking more like a penguin then a serious job contender. Remember, dress like you would for work and not how you dress when you are at home.
But it isn’t just what you wear that will make you stand out but also your physical aspects like hair and personal hygiene that will also leave a lasting impression. Again, knowing who you are interviewing for is vital in knowing how to groom yourself. A tech start-up may not find that bushy unkept beard a major turn off while a more corporate environment may think twice about hiring an applicant who looks like he needs a good shave.
Tattoos, piercings, hair styles and wacky hair colours in a job interview can either be a good way to stand out or hinder your application depending on the type of role that you are applying for. Dress and style yourself accordingly, and maybe take the nose ring out.
What Get Licensed Says
In a job market in which recruiters make quick subjective decisions during a job interview based upon appearance, it can be hard in knowing the balance between being comfortable and looking professional. Know your own personal style but also get a feel of the type of company you are interviewing for and strike a balance that makes you feel good, but also ensures that you look the part.