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Looking sharp for your interview

February 2, 2018  

Colours you wear should be neutral and not outrageous. Walking in wearing a blood red dress, will definitely make you memorable but you have to ask yourself if that is appropriate for the role you are looking to secure. If you keep your colours neutral during the interview, you have less chance of setting someone off. This also goes for men’s dress shirts, ties or fancy coloured socks. You can express your characteristic and your personality beyond the blandness of the interview attire once you have the job in hand.

Hair must be clean, washed and well kept. I have in my years, interviewed many people when you could actually smell their hair and not in a good way. Or a huge swath of facial hair that hasn’t been shaved or parts have been missed in the shave or for that matter two days’ worth of growth. In some businesses, that may be fine, but for an interview, be safe and go with clean cut. Having a beard is not an issue; it just must be maintained and clean. I cannot stress this enough; you will have the opportunity to let your personality come out once you have the job. 

 Makeup should be minimal, dark eyeliner with bright eye shadow is fine for a club scene. It’s not the best look for an interview and consider the same for foundation. We are not going to be on TV where you need to cake on the foundation. Keep it light.

You should never keep anything physical between you and the interviewer.  Minimize accessories. Many people like to bring little pads for writing notes and something to keep their resume in. It’s fine to have something to keep resumes in, so it doesn’t get crumpled, but don’t have a notepad in front of you. This is a conversation, so unless you’re actually going to be doing a case study where there’s going to be exercises and you need to write things down to remember them, have a conversation.  If you can’t retain a conversation or important variables within the interview, then I question whether or not you’re going to impress the audience. It’s like serving staff that bring a pen and paper to the table. You need to be good enough to remember what the six people ordered with all of their nuances.

Shoes should be neutral, clean and polished. Laces need to be crisp. They need to be new. Shoes shouldn’t be worn through on the bottoms. And they should be comfortable. If you go out and you buy brand new shoes for your first day of interviews and your feet become blistered, you’re not going to be able to concentrate during the interview. Heels should be tasteful, whatever that means to you. There’s a time and a place for six-inch heels and it’s not likely at your first interview. Shoe fabric should be conservative. This is the same for stockings or shirts; avoid patterns that are a little bit avant-garde; keep it neutral.

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