What Is the Importance of Appearance in a Job Interview?
By Rilind Elejaz
We as a society went forward enough that it’s safe to say that your outfit won’t make or break your chances of getting a job (unless you’re working in fashion). But can looking good push you forward and allow you to stand out? Definitely! That’s why it’s important to think about your appearance when interviewing and dressing the part. Just how important it is to slay your look, let’s learn below:
Not every industry is the same—some have more casual dress codes and some require a very formal and conservative approach to the wardrobe. Do your research about the company and make sure to check about the company culture and expectations so you can dress in a way that will fit the overall tone of the company. You can check with your professional contacts, but if you don’t know anyone in the company, you can call the HR department and seek tips about the appropriate interview attire for their organization. When in doubt about what to wear, it’s always better to come overdressed than underdressed—you’ll feel much more confident and pleasant.
It leaves a good first impression
People are highly visual creatures and even more judgmental, mostly unconsciously. The way you look in your first interview will set the first impression which is very hard to challenge. If you look appropriate, clean, and put together, you will leave an impression of a responsible person that cares about the outcome of the interview. It also shows respect towards the company, the interview process, and those conducting it. If you don’t look the part, you will have to work extra hard to leave a good impression.
It makes you look neat and responsible
According to research done on interviewees and interviewers and their external attributes, the look has a lot to do with the process of hiring employees. The state of the interviewed person’s grooming leaves the strongest influence on the employer. More than 70% of hiring experts say that grooming affects their decision because it leaves an impression that a person is responsible, dedicated, and careful. So before your interview, make sure to invest in a good haircut, shave, and manicure. Also, make sure to take a nice shower, brush your teeth, polish your shoes and leave a general impression of cleanliness.
It shows your qualities
For instance, if you decide to dress up for your interview and put on jewelry or bring a beautiful accessory with you, it will definitely leave an impression on your potential employer. It will say that you’re detail-oriented and a perfectionist who is not going to let anything slide. So leave your beat-up wallet at home and choose a stylish and modern carbon fiber wallet that will impress when you whip out your ID or business card. It will also look much neater in your pocket! Or you can accompany your outfit with an elegant face mask, watch, earrings, necklaces, or any other piece of jewelry that will show how responsible yet dedicated to details.
It tells of professionalism
Sure, if you dress up you will look professional, but it’s more about acting professional than looking it. Proper attire indicates that you recognize norms and standards and respect the company’s culture. You might believe that everyone should be judged based solely on their talents, dressing up does not mean you’re relying on your clothes—it means you respect the industry, employers, clients, and yourself, and you can follow directives of the company.
It gives you confidence
When you put on a perfect outfit that flatters your figure, looks trendy and modern, and matches your energy, you will get an instant boost of confidence and get into just the right frame of mind to slay your interview. No matter if the interview is in person or over Skype or phone, dressing up will have the same effect on your brain. When you feel like a champion, you will act like a champion and bring your A-game to every interview.
It demands respect
People automatically have more respect for people who look professional. If you want to leave the air of professionalism and esteem, make sure to dress formally. A tailored suit is always a good option for both men and women, but if you want to go a little less formal yet still leave a great impression, fitted pants, a button-up with a sweater and elegant shoes will achieve the desired effect. It will show that you’re a serious candidate that respects their own body and mind—the interviewers and employers will provide you with the same energy feedback. A sloppy outfit is usually noticed on people who don’t respect themselves so who should someone else respect them in return?
If you’re aiming to dress to impress, make sure to do your research to fit into the company and its culture and show what a great addition you’d be to the business. And don’t be scared to step things up a notch and go a bit more formal than regular employees, just to stand out. If the norm is a sport coat and slacks, you can add chinos and a tie to the mix. Once you nail your interview and get the job, you can adjust your look and fit in with the rest of your team.