How HR Managers Learn Things About Us by Looking at Our Clothes
It takes an HR manager only one look at you to understand how reliable and competent you are, and to draw conclusions about your social status and goals. Sherry Maysonave, head of Empowerment Enterprises, an image consulting firm based in Austin, Texas, says that the first impression happens in less than 30 seconds and it’s based entirely on your attire. This is why you should choose your clothes very wisely, if you don't want to be out of the race before the interview begins.
Bright Side talks about 5 things in your closet that HR managers use to form their opinions about you, like whether you will fit into the corporate culture. These things carry encrypted information about the level of your professionalism.
1. What the colors of your clothes say about you
Using the color of your clothes, you can influence other people however you want. "Whether we are conscious of it or not, the colors we choose for our business attire send a strong message," says Lynda Goldman, business communications and etiquette consultant.
So you have to pay serious of attention to the color of the clothes you are going to wear for a job interview.
If you choose clothes with contrasting colors, you could make an powerful and dominant impression.
Pastel colors in clothes and makeup can help you win other people's trust. The most important thing is to not overdo it. Otherwise, you might seem childish and immature.
Blue is probably the best color choice for a job interview. This is why uniforms and business suits are often blue. It's associated with reliability, confidence, competence, and expertise.
The color red represents the life force and the inclination to be successful and efficient. This is a color of leadership and means that you are not afraid of standing out and attracting attention to yourself. However, for the first job interview, it's better to choose a deeper shade of red like, maroon. This choice will make people think that you are wise, well-educated, and can help you earn the respect that you deserve.
Dark clothes make your potential employer feel like you are a serious, reliable, and competent candidate.
The worst color choice for a job interview, according to studies and opinions of specialists, is orange — it's often associated with something unprofessional. So, maybe save your favorite orange blouse for the weekend.
2. What the style of your clothes says about you
Business suits are not always the best choice for a job interview because the impression you may give the employer is that you are "overqualified." This stereotype happens because on a subconscious level people think that only highly-qualified workers with a lot of ambition dress in this manner.
If a manager is hiring for a senior-level position, then this type of serious look may be advantageous. However, if you are looking for a job as a nurse, or a shop assistant, this type of attire is inappropriate. HR specialists may think that your ambitions are too high for this position, and will move on to the next candidate.
If a woman wears a flower print dress and her hair long, she doesn't look like a successful leader. For most office jobs, these clothes are inappropriate. But if you are looking for a job teaching children or a creative job, this type of attire is not just appropriate, but also preferable.
3. What your brands say about you
Luxury brand logos, an expensive watch, or the latest-model cell phone mean that status plays a big role for the candidate, and they care about the impression they make on other people.
People who are demonstrative are not the best bosses, so this may decrease their chances of getting a leadership type of role. The office is not the place where one should demonstrate their financial dominance over other people, and especially not over the employer.
4. Illustrative details
There are no meaningless details when talking about the image of a businesswoman. Keep in mind that if you notice a bad manicure, old clothes, and other flaws, so can a potential employer and this can make a bad impression.
Also, you should avoid very bright makeup and strong perfume.
When it comes to jewelry, wear small and elegant pieces of jewelry like small earrings, bracelets, and watches. Glasses with a very stylish frame can be a great touch for your image. But earrings that look cheap, or ones which are made of cheap materials like plastic, are not a good idea for a job interview.
Your bag should have a clear shape. Avoid bags that don't have a shape, ones that look like a sack, and bags with bright pictures, these can only be used for informal occasions. And don't be afraid of including a few colorful accessories — even a very serious suit can look completely different if you add a bright red bag to it.
5. Clothes say how well you can fit into the corporate culture, are you one of us or not?
Your attire should be as close to the company dress code as possible. People are more eager to accept other people who are like them, so the more you look like the other employees, the easier it is for an HR manager to imagine you working with them.
In order to do your research, you can use social media. A Facebook, Instagram, or webpage of the company you want to work for is probably out there somewhere. Go find and study the page carefully. HR managers are usually very attentive to the information about the candidate that they can find online, so job-seeking specialists strongly recommend that you do the same.
- If the employees of the company you want to work for dress in a formal business style then you should definitely wear a suit, and women can wear a simple dress with a jacket.
- If they wear casual clothes, you don't need a jacket or a suit, but don't put on jeans, sneakers, or T-shirts.
- If you need something completely informal, you should put on a least one "serious" thing. For example, you can wear jeans with a blazer.
- If you applied for a creative position: designer, marketer, PR specialist, illustrator, copywriter, event host, and so on, you need to be creative about your image. Include some bright colors in your attire and put on some accessories. Look at it this way: how can you get a creative job if you bore people with the way you look? Some companies even prohibit wearing ordinary clothes. You should make it clear that you value the freedom of creativity and you are open to new ideas.
And how do you plan your outfit when you are getting ready for a job interview?