Firm handshakes, eye contact, the perfect outfit—of all the first impressions you have every opportunity to get right, it’s your attire that makes that first statement about who you are. And never is this truer than for a job interview. It can be tricky to get it just right, but with these simple tips, you can walk into every interview dressed to impress.
For starters, what kind of gig are you after? Wearing a suit isn’t always the right move, and it’s best to show up with what you expect to wear during the job. If you’re not sure, scope out the environment a few days before and take notes on the better-dressed employees. But when in doubt, wear a suit. It’s always better to overdress than underdress.
If you wear a suit, there are a few things to consider. Skinny ties are in these days, but trendy isn’t what you’re after. Go for a simple, neutral-colored, well-tied tie about 3½ inches wide. Also, go neutral with socks. While your sock choice can be an opportunity to show your fashion flair, for an interview, it is better to match your socks to your trousers. Leave the pocket squares and the gold cuff links at home.
With a suit, fit is everything. Make sure the suit fits, especially in the shoulders (which should have some tightness) and sleeves (they shouldn’t go below the base of your thumb or be too baggy). You don’t want to look like you’re wearing your grandfather’s hand-me-downs from the fifties. Remember that color matters. There’s a reason people wear black suits at funerals, they’re severe and overly formal. Grey and navy suits lighten the mood and are easier on most skin tones. They also work for all seasons. Compliment your outfit with polished, proper shoes that match your belt. Don’t be the guy wearing sneakers below your trousers.
Now get out there and put that swagger to work fellas!