You’ve heard people say, dress for the job you want, not the job you have, but how do you actually do that? How can you make a great first impression and get the job you want?
When meeting someone new, even before you speak, your appearance has already started to speak for you. From the clothes you’re wearing to the jewelry you have on, people notice these things and make assumptions about you based on them.
So how can you dress for success and make a great first impression from the moment someone sees you? Find out as we share our top tips with you!
Dress to the Company Culture
Different types of companies have different cultures and different dress codes. When you are interviewing or meeting with someone from a company, try to align yourself with the company culture and dress code. For example, if you’re interviewing for a job at a bank, you want to wear a suit to show your professionalism and align with the common dress code in banking.
Do the research to find out what the dress code is for the specific company before your meeting, so you can walk in prepared and confident! Here are the typical dress codes that companies follow:
- Business Formal – This is the highest level of professional dress. Formal suits, solid color ties, button-up shirts, dress shoes, and dark colors are all common as part of this dress code.
- Business Professional – Moving one step down, business professional allows for a little more color to be infused into your attire. Dress pants, professional skirts, sports jackets, ties with patterns, and nice shirts can all be worn with this dress code.
- Business Casual – With this dress code, you can add much more personality to your look. Shirts with colors and patterns, skirts in various colors, khakis, polos, vests, and sweaters are all great for this dress code.
- Casual – As the most informal, casual allows for many different types of dress. T-shirts, jeans, skirts, sweaters, sandals, and sneakers are all part of casual attire.
One thing to note here, is that even if a company follows a casual dress code, it’s still best to dress up for meetings and interviews, as this will show your professionalism.
Dress for the Specific Event
Various types of business events can require different types of dress. For job interviews, you must always look your professional best. Choosing colors that aren’t distracting, clothing that is business professional, not wearing too much jewelry or fragrance, and having a sophisticated hairstyle are all great things to remember for interviews. You only get one chance to make an awesome first impression, so make it count!
Today, many interviews are completed via video with programs like Skype. Even though it’s a video interview, you still need to look professional, because the person on the other end will still be able to see your appearance. Always wear business clothes with a professional looking hairstyle, as the person will at least see the top half of you.
You must also look professional for things like networking events and career fairs. Even if the people you meet aren’t the ones directly hiring, they can still have influence on hiring decisions, or could refer you to opportunities if you make a great first impression.
Dress for Success Tips
When just starting out in your career, dressing for success can seem overwhelming. You may not currently have many professional clothes or may be unsure about what is acceptable in the workplace. Here are some tips to help you get started:
- Shop strategically by buying pieces that can be worn in many ways.
- Dress in solid colors, as complex patterns can be distracting.
- Choose clothing that is conservative.
- Wear minimal jewelry by choosing your favorite piece and wearing that one only.
- Cover piercings and tattoos because you want people to be focused on how great you are, instead of wondering what your tattoo means.
- Wear a clean and professional hairstyle.
- Don’t use too much perfume or cologne, as some people may be allergic.
- Keep makeup looking professional and natural.
When in doubt, remember this quote from Oscar Wilde: “You can never be overdressed or over-educated.”
Put Your Career on the Fast Track
Now you’re ready to dress for success and make a great first impression on anyone you meet!
At United Career Institute Mt. Braddock, you can get the education and training needed to begin your great career. Learn more about our Practical Nursing, Medical Assisting, and Medical Office Administration programs and request information now to get started!