It Only Takes a Second (or 10)
Over 50% of communication is non-verbal, so your outfit has the capacity to scream professionalism, or haphazardness. According to a recent study, if you opt for a shoddy ensemble in a job interview, it can be just as offensive as picking your nose in front of your potential boss. It’s widely accepted that first impressions are formed at an astounding pace – 10 seconds to be precise – and the chances are the garments you adorn play a rather large part in that judgement. Whilst comfort is obviously a necessity, you also want to look smart and as though thought and research have gone into what you’re wearing.
Fake it till you Make It
Firstly, if you’re dressed comfortably, chances are you’ll feel a lot more confident within yourself, which is always a winner during interviews. This comfort, and thus confidence, can be achieved through your clothing, but also your make up. Whilst a good night’s sleep prior to the meeting is a given, if you look a little run-down concealer will be your best friend. Foundation also works wonders in evening out your skin tone. However, you don’t want to go too heavy as it can act as a distraction; keep it light and fresh. Just like a power suit, the right lippy can make you feel as though you could run the world, and make you more memorable to whoever is interviewing (who wouldn’t remember the girl with the orange lipstick?). If you do opt for a bold lip, make sure you stick to the timeless rule of one statement feature. Following that, a slick of mascara and a little neutral blush will leave you looking flawless, vibrant and confident. Make up has the ability to exhibit your attention to detail, neatness and competence – traits I’m certain all employers seek in the ideal candidate.
Dress for the Win
Now we’ve covered your face, it’s time to delve into the depths of your wardrobe. But first, research is key. Whilst I’m sure you’ve looked extensively into the workings of the business your interviewing for, you might also want to pay some attention to the dress code. Have a stalk of their Instagram and website and assess the vibe of the employee’s fashion sense. If their an uber cool creative agency with Nike air forces appearing left right and centre, a full suit is perhaps a little to stuffy. That’s not to say you should jump on the band wagon of ripped jeans and trainers though, as you still need to exude professionalism, just in a more modern way. A good option would be a dark pair of trousers with a patterned or coloured blouse and a pair of loafers.
Get Suited and Booted
If you’re interviewing at a large city firm where the partners are kitted out with Saville Row tailor made suits, such casual attire won’t sit as well, and a suit will be a must. Ensuring you appear to fit into the culture of a company is really important at the interview stage. If you achieve that, in your sleek and professional look, you can achieve the halo effect. This doesn’t mean the sun shines out of your arse like baby Jesus, but instead that your interviewer will be inclined to see you in a positive light and more likely to forgive any slip ups.
Prepare Today so you can Boss Tomorrow
You want to be relaxed the morning of your interview, not running around like a headless chicken, frantically sorting through your laundry basket, cursing your mother for not cleaning your blouse. To avoid such distress, get your outfit ready the night before and do a check to ensure it’s definitely clean, it sounds silly but the last thing you want is to spot a blotch of pasta sauce on your white shirt.
You have control over how you dress, and it is one of the first indicators an employer has as to what kind of character you are. Tailor your outfit to the offices you’re attending, look and feel confident, and smash your interview.