Annita Hannadja explains how to learn to dress for job interview. Your first impression on employer is always your dress.
As I have already mentioned in my previous article, whichever position you are applying for, your image is always going to play a powerful factor in helping your interviewer decide whether you are the perfect candidate for the job or not.
Know the company
Ask yourself some questions; how much do you know about the company culture? Is it a serious legal firm or a creative design company?
- What are the key aspects of this job?
- Five key words that best describe this company and what are its values?
- What are the attitudes of the company leaders?
- What message would I like to portray?
- How do I want to feel?
An ideal place to start for getting the answers for these questions is usually by observing the company’s website. You can usually get an amount of information about the company. By something as simple as their website design, the images used, and the choice of vocabulary.
For example some companies adopt a very personal, playful and conversational tone for their website. Key members of the team may be featured on the website with casual profile pictures or slightly bizarre details. These details tend to indicate a little bit about the laid-back “character” of the company and, accordingly, the interview may take on a less formal approach.
If this is the case, then, there is a good chance that the interviewers may look for individuality in your wardrobe choices! Use your image as a creative tool to demonstrate that you “fit in” with the company culture. Your interviewer will be able to imagine you in the job position. Your image may even help you to build rapport because in some ways you are ‘aligning’ with the company and ‘matching’ the team who works there!
On the other hand, another example might be a company website which has a strong, traditionally corporate look. The tone may be very formal with carefully scripted website copy and a conservative colour scheme. Profile pictures of the directors will often portray them as executively dressed and perfectly groomed. No personal details will be mentioned, but there will be highlighted details of awards and qualifications each person has received.
An interview with such company means that it should have a very different approach and will be strictly regimented. Your image should reflect the serious and traditional attitudes of the company.
Clarify the message you wish to communicate about yourself, and visualize the way you would like to feel during the interview. This, will guide you to discover the perfect outfit. In fact, the perfect outfit will start to materialize in your mind.
If you are still not sure, then, have a personal visit to the company and watch employees coming in and out of the building to see what they are wearing. You might get an idea of how formally, or casually you ought to dress.
Also, check with the hiring company if they have a dress code for the interview, as they may give you some guidelines.