You’ve spent endless hours applying online for jobs, filling long forms, and trying to find old job numbers and BOOM you finally scored a job interview. Sooner than you expect, they want to meet with you and then it hits you…. What am I going to wear?! Well thanks to my previous experiences, here are my tips on looking your best for your next interview.
CLASSIC AND MODERN
Throughout my interview experiences, I’ve seen it all. Men dressed in oversize shirts and suit jackets, baggy khaki pants, over-worn dress shoes and few other mistakes. But one thing I can tell you, is that a classic suit will never run out of style. Whether you wear it with a tie or not, that’s up to you. However, make sure its fitted. If you’re on a tight budget (like myself) there’s no need to worry. Nowadays, suits aren’t as expensive as they used to be. Instead of focusing on quality, focus on the overall image. Stores like H+M, TopMan, Banana Republic, Zara and others offer a wide variety at an affordable price. Try to stay within classic colors (Charcoal, Navy, Black) and the biggest advice I can give you: just because it looks good on him, doesn’t mean it will look good on you! Therefore try everything on before you buy it!
TOSS THE FOLDER!
Honestly! I can’t stress this enough. DO NOT, I repeat DO NOT take your resume on a manila (or any other color) folder!!! You’re in your mid-20s (or older) and still carrying that wrinkled, stained thing with you? ABSOLUTELY NO! Instead invest in a professional portfolio bag, or clutch. Believe me, not only will it make you look modern, but it will allow you to carry several items (resume, business cards, keys, phone, agenda, etc.). Leave the bulky side pockets and heavy wallets in the past! Depending on the portfolio, you can now travel comfortably and with no extra baggage.
I’ll keep this section simple as it can easily be a whole different topic. From what I’ve been coached, you should generally take anywhere from 3-5 resumes with you as well as business cards. I’ve had interviews in where the person interviewing me had no resumes, they forgot to print out a copy or they invited other people (without me knowing) and having those extra copies helped a lot. Employers aren’t necessarily focusing on the paper quality but the information rather. Therefore, I print my resumes on normal 8.5 x 11 print paper. If I ever happen to interview for my dream job (fingers crossed) then I’ll consider purchasing high quality resume paper.
Side Note: Edit your resume to apply for each individual employer. Even though your major is in design, it doesn’t mean you can’t apply for a marketing or merchandise job, therefore you should edit your resume to fit those qualifications.
This section may be a bit challenging to describe simply because it all depends on your suit and taste. Personally, I have worn a navy suit, no tie and loafers (similar to the second image below). I have never really been a fan of colored or patterned socks (just not my thing). However, If you’re going for a more traditional look and would prefer to wear socks, make sure you either match your socks to your belt (i.e. Black/Black or Brown/Brown) or in the event that you decide to go belt-less, wearing black (cotton) socks is always a safe bet. If you’re rocking the sock-less look, then the belt should be similar (or a complementing tone) to your suit.
Your shoes shouldn’t look worn out (invest in shoe trees, google it) or as if they were from your dad’s era (toss them along with you folders); Invest on thinned-sole dress shoes (Aldo, Call It Spring, DSW, etc.) in where they’re not bulky or out of style.
And for your sake, DO NOT WEAR WHITE SOCKS with your suit! The only person I know that rocked that look amazingly was Michael Jackson.
Plan ahead, do your research, and thank me later!