Before you even have the chance to speak to your interviewer, you will already be communicating with them through the way you look. Up until this point, your resume has impressed your interviewer enough to get an interview. However, how you look, conduct yourself and communicate needs also to back up what you have said.
Here are some tips to help you dress for interview success and to stand out for all of the right reasons to your interviewers.
Look like you already belong in the workplace
When you turn up for an interview, you want to look like you already belong there. If the job is in retail, then dress like you already work in the store. Drop by and see what the other team members are wearing in the store before your interview. If the job is in a safety conscious environment like manufacturing, make sure you wear a long sleeved shirt and pants, along with closed in shoes.
Don’t be remembered for the wrong things
While you do want to create a positive and lasting impression at interview and showcase some of your personality, you don’t be the applicant who was remembered for the wrong reasons. Like “you remember, the one with those huge dangly earrings” or “the one who looked like they just got out of bed”.
While you do want to stand out at your interview, it’s generally not the right time to showcase your personality or flamboyant style. We recommend avoiding avoid loud colours and prints, flashy ties, excessive jewellery, overpowering perfumes and after-shaves and to make up understated.
Ensure your appearance is neat and tidy
Your hair should be neat, clean, and conservative and your clothes should be well fitted and coordinated. To make a good impression it is important to appear professional and well groomed – someone an employer would be happy to represent their company.
Leave time for a final check
Take the time to do a final check of your appearance before the interview. Either in the car mirror or a bathroom nearby at a fast food place or petrol station. This is the ideal time to double check that all of your buttons and zippers are done up, that your hair is still neat and that there is nothing in your teeth or on your face.
Pay attention to your non-verbals
While you are likely to feel nervous, it is important to appear confident. One way to do this is to maintain eye contact and to give a firm (but not overdoing it) handshake to your interviewer/s. Your facial expressions, gestures, posture, dress and level of eye contact will all go towards making a strong first impression at the interview.
Be on time
Ok so being on time isn’t exactly something you can dress for, but it does reflect on your character. There is no excuse for being late to an interview. If you are driving in, leave earlier and factor in additional time for traffic and parking. If you are catching public transport, get the earlier bus or train.
You can’t possibly know what obstacles may present themselves on the day to add in a buffer of time. This extra time can also help you mentally prepare and go over some of the answers you would like to provide in the interview. There is nothing worse than getting to an interview and being stressed, flustered and sweaty without having the space to calm down and gather your thoughts.