Does it really make a difference how you dress for an interview?

It's a true statement, "you don't get a second chance to make a first impression". It is important for you to do everything you can to make a good impression on anyone you meet, especially to a potential employer. The first judgment an interviewer makes is going to be based on how you look and what you are wearing. That's why it is always important to dress professionally for a job interview.

Today's workplace dress codes have become somewhat more relaxed. Your appearance speaks volumes so it makes sense to dress your best for the interview, regardless of the dress code at the organization. If you are in doubt how to dress for an interview, it is best to be conservative. It is much better to be overdressed than underdressed. If you are not sure, check with the person who scheduled the interview and ask. You can also research the industry/ field and company. Another idea, talk with people in or above the level of the position you want to work.

Before you go on that job interview, make sure you read these dressing tips! Many people take for granted the appearance aspect of the job hunting process. The better you are dress, the more confident you will feel and exude. Remember, it's not so much what you wear rather it is more a matter of NOT taking yourself out of contention by your presentation.

There's no impression like the first impression. Good luck!

For whatever position you are applying, follow a few simple rules;

  • Don't chew gum
  • Be clean and tidy, a must!
  • Wear little or no fragrances (perfumes, colognes, lotions, etc.)
  • Cover visible tattoos and take out body piercings (nose rings, eyebrow rings, etc.)
  • Look in the mirror, if too much is showing, don't wear it

Guidelines for women:

  • Dresses, suits or trouser pants- black, blue, navy, gray, beige, tan or brown. Skirt length should be at least at the knee
  • Blouses: simple style, white or soft colors. Avoid very frilly styles and low cut necklines
  • Shoes: sensible shoes, professional and polished
  • Purse: optional
  • Nail polish: either clear or conservative color
  • Makeup: moderate
  • Jewelry: simple, minimal (jewelry can be flashy and distracting)

Guidelines for men:

  • Suits or trouser pants- dark blue, gray, brown, tan or black
  • Shirts: a good quality, classic button-down , classic collar preferred. Most importantly, make sure the shirt is not wrinkled
  • Ties: conservative stripes or color that complement your suit/ trouser pants. The tip of the tie should end near the center of the belt buckle
  • Shoes: polished slip-ons or laced dress shoes in black or brown. Dark socks
  • Jewelry: no chains, bands or necklaces showing. No rings other than wedding ring or college ring. No earrings ( if you normally wear one, take it out)