IntroductionAppearance & conduct matter – we areinitially judged by how we present ourselves;the business world is no exception!Attention to detail makes a huge impactProfessionalism is based on how you look andact…professionalism is an “attitude”
Business CasualSlacks (solid or conservatively patterned);khakis may be acceptableSkirts, medium to long in lengthCoordinating silk, cotton, or rayon blousesCardigan sweatersNice, well-maintained shoes (low heeled)Casual, well-coordinated accessories includingbelts, purse or handbag
Important to NoteNEVER dress business casual for a jobinterview…even if the recruiter says that youcan or should!FIRST IMPRESSIONS are lasting impressions
Business DressGood-quality, lightweight wool suits (if notwool, then should have full lining) withcoordinating silk, rayon, or cotton blousesGood-quality, closed-toe dress pumps(medium heeled – 1 ½” to 2” heel at most)Good-quality dress accessories includingscarves, belts, jewelry, purses, and of course,hosiery–KEEP IT SIMPLE & CONSERVATIVE!
Formal WearCocktail evening dress (medium to full length)Matching or coordinated evening pumps(medium to high-heeled)Hosiery (neutral-toned)Fine-quality accessories including scarves,shawls, and jewelry
Dressing for an InterviewSuitsBlousesShoesAccessoriesPersonal Grooming
Suits100% wool, Microfibre & Lycra offer the bestcomfort & versatilityBest fabric weaves: Gabardine & Crepe (soft, yetdurable)Style should be classic not trendyStick with dark, solid colors such as navy, black,charcoal gray, and brownSkirt should be just above or at the kneePantsuits acceptable although some view as businesscasual
Popular Suit BrandsKasper Calvin KleinLe Suit DKNYLiz Claiborne Ann TaylorJosephine Chaus TalbotsJones New York Preston & YorkBanana Republic Brooks BrothersExpress Anne Klein
BlousesShould never be cut lower than necklineSilk, cotton, or rayon are best for both comfort& appearanceColor of blouse should never overpower thecolor of your suit; soft-toned neutrals areappropriate against a dark background, aswell as tone-on-tone looks
ShoesColor of the shoes should match your suitClosed-toe pumps with no more than a two-inch heel are best; sling-backs are acceptableMake sure your shoes are polished and looknew – no worn heels
AccessoriesNeutral hose, avoid dark when possibleBelt & purse should match shoesDon’t overdo jewelry – nothing flashy or toobig (a single strand of pearls, a watch, no morethan 1 ring on each hand and simple hoop orstud earrings is good)No visible body piercing – one piercing per ear
Accessories, cont’dDo not carry a purse AND an attaché case –choose one or the other, but not bothSimplicity is KEY
Personal GroomingWear minimal, neutral-toned make-up thatenhances your appearanceHairstyle should reflect your personality yet bewell-groomed and cleanPerfume: a little is just enoughNails: clean, short & manicured (clear polishor French style)
No Matter WhatMake sure that what you wear fits youproperlyBe comfortableAs for level of appropriateness: if you are indoubt, either ask someone you trust or wearsomething else
Image “Dos”Keep a straight postureGive a firm handshakeMake eye-contact when speakingUse proper grammarMake sure you have fresh breath & clean teeth
Image “Dos”Keeps knees together when sittingWear clothes of good qualityThink “professional” not “trendy” Dress for the position you want, not the position you have
Image “Don’ts”Speaking too softly or too quicklyWear scuffed up or scruffy shoes – polishthemWear clothing with loose or missing buttonsWear clothing with hems in need of repairWear stained, spotted, or perspiration-stainedclothing
Image “Don’ts,” cont’dCurse or use profane languageWear too much jewelryChew gumWear shoes with no hosieryHave an outdated or unbecoming hairstyleHave hair roots in need of retouchingHave chipped nail polish
Image “Don’ts,” cont’dKeep nails that are too longWear excessive or no make-upWear white pumpsWear hose with sandals (toeless kind acceptable)Wear cheap-looking or worn-out belts or pursesWear large prints and outrageous colorsWear jacket sleeves that are too long/too short
Image “Don’ts,” cont’dShow underwear linesWear heavy perfume/cologneCarry an inappropriate handbag (too large, toocasual, too detailed; carry a day bag withevening wear, etc.)Wear hosiery with a run – always keep a sparepair
Image “Don’ts,” cont’d Have un-manicured feet when wearing sandals (nobody wants to see “funky” feet) Have worn off/too much lipstick Walk with an unfeminine stride (or stance)“Think and act like a professional”
Additional ResourcesCareer Services Organization on Bb; Career-Related Videos CareerSpots – Interview Dress for Women Dress for Success – What to Wear(Ladies)
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