Selecting your clothes for a hiring interview is a balancing act. Hence the importance of taking an interest in this aspect a few days ahead of time so you can choose clothes that will reflect the image you wish to give. Once on the job, it will not necessarily be easier to dress… between the peculiarities of your business, the company’s dress code and any potential requirements of your employer.
During the interview: show sobriety
What is more natural than spending an hour before your wardrobe in order to choose dress in which you will be at ease and comfortable during your interview. And for good reason, because you know that the recruiter will judge you, perhaps unconsciously, by how you dress. Choose an understated look – clothes in a neutral tone (black, grey, dark blue, beige), light makeup appropriate to your complexion, neat hairstyle – all enhanced with a hint of colour to mark your personality and your dynamism (red lipstick, scarf, ring, tie…), while avoiding falling into the eccentricity of a polka dot tie, plunging neckline or earrings that go gling gling with the slightest nod. Remember also that you should not hide behind your dress. It is important for the recruiter to be able to understand your gestures, so avoid clothing that is too loose and remember to keep your neck and wrists clear. Finally, don’t hesitate to browse the company’s website to get inspired by the models posted there.
In the company: know how to adapt while asserting yourself
It would not be wrong to say that there are as many ways of having/being able to dress as there are employers. It’s quite simple when hired in a fast food restaurant: you wear a uniform according to the company’s image, which will be provided to you free of charge. If you work in a clothing store and the employer wants you to wear them, they will also be without charge to you. Where things get tougher is when you work in an office. There is often a more or less strict dress code in force. It should be presented to you as soon as you are hired and also made available to all employees when there is any change. This code should be applicable to both men and women, without mentioning the types of clothing according to gender, and should also integrate with the organization’s different cultures. In the absence of a code, it’s essential to refer to the trends of the industry and the company’s culture. In general terms a two-piece suit could be considered for Réjean working in a bank, a business suit for Barbara who is a lawyer, jeans for Luc, the computer scientist, street clothes for our physiotherapist Annie or a colourful shirt for our graphic designer Alex. But under no circumstances should unfounded demands be accepted from an employer who would like you to wear seductive (very short skirts) or uncomfortable (stiletto heels) outfits for the sole purpose of increasing sales in his restaurant, for example. For this, a bill in British Columbia is currently being discussed to put an end to “these unacceptable practices“, as Premier Christy Clark calls them.
For those who go crazy each morning with the puzzle of having to choose clothes that suit their personality, the company’s dress code and industry trends, use common sense and just do what comes naturally.