Here is Part 2 of my series, 4 "P's" of Marketing Yourself. If you missed part 1, read the first installment, "PITCH".
Some of you may find this material remedial while others will be enlightened by it. If you are in a career transition it is essential that you learn how to PITCH and PRESENT yourself in the best possible light.
“What is the dress code?” If I had a dollar for every time I am asked that question by prospective candidates in advance of their first interview with a client company I would be well, a guy with heck of a lot of dollars! Truth be told, I am flummoxed by that query. No, actually I am really annoyed but it.So, for once and for all let me set the record straight. This is the final, final answer to that question.
The answer is: You should dress in a manner that is the very best professional representation of who you are and how you will represent the company. Period.
No blue jeans. No Birkenstocks. No all black ensembles that make you look like Dieter from the Sprockets skit on S.N.L. Casual dress is for weekends and walking your dog. It isn’t for an interview. A clean, crisp conservative style always shows well. Think Brooks Brothers not True Religion. There. You now can cross off that “dress code” question from your list.
Why am I so wrapped around the axle on this issue? Because clients who retain me to find superior talent for them have an expectation of what superior talent looks like, regardless of the position being interviewed for. You will be evaluated by how you present yourself and first impressions are a huge determinate of lasting perceptions. Oh, and in case you forgot. The interview isn’t really about YOU. It is about the COMPANY and their analysis of your fit and function. They will hire you based on your experience, track record and the value they expect you will deliver. Many a qualified candidate are not asked back to the next round of interviews because of one the key stakeholders on the interview team “didn’t like the way he or she PRESENTED themselves.” Yes. Happens all the time. Leave nothing to chance in the interview process. This includes what you wear.
Got it? Great!
Now, go buy some slacks.