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The Interview Before Your Job Interview

Post Author Sarah Chatelain
Feb 4, 2014 9:39:00 AM
Career Tips

It’s common knowledge that you should dress up for a job interview, but did you know that you should also consider what you wear when you’re picking up job applications or turning in your resume?  Potential employers are concerned as much (if not more) about your outfit when you’re asking them for a job as when you’re formally interviewing for one.  While it’s true that you shouldn’t always judge a book by its cover, your potential employer will certainly judge what kind of employee you might be by what you wear when you come in to introduce yourself and deliver your resume (if possible).

Even though most companies have the ability to accept job applications and resumes online, it is still a good idea to go into the business in person and introduce yourself to the hiring manager.  This accomplishes a few critical points: first, it allows the manager to put an actual face to your name, and second, if you made a good first impression, he or she will be more inclined to look more favorably at your resume.  While you don’t have to dress up as if you are interviewing, you should at least wear something that says you woke up that morning intending to find a job.  Here are a few tips to find the appropriate attire to impress future employers:

1. Do some research before introducing yourself

Look on the company website and investigate what their employees are wearing.  Normally, the company will have an employment page with pictures of their staff to encourage you to apply.  You can base your outfit on what they are wearing when you dress to introduce yourself, and then go a step above that for your job interview.  This will show that you take the interview seriously and you are invested in this opportunity.

2. Show some personality 

Your potential employer has probably seen a wide variety of applicants who have done the same kind of research that you have.  Wearing at least one appropriate item that he or she will remember will help you stand out from the crowd.  This could be anything from a blazer, to a boldly colored shirt, to an elaborate scarf.  While it may seem trivial, this is a simple way to show that you have a unique and valuable view to bring to the team.

3. Don’t forget to smile

Your most important accessory is your smile.  Many studies have shown that people who smile are generally perceived to be more confident, capable, and able to successfully navigate a variety of challenges.    

Outfitting yourself to make a positive first impression in your search for employment is only the first step in getting the job.  However, your attention to detail can make a significant difference in how you compare to other applicants.  Your primary meeting with your potential employer is the first part of your job interview, and your appearance will certainly speak louder than the words on your resume.

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