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Can Dressing for Success Help to Get You the Job You Want?

“Dress how you want to be addressed” - is one of the best quotes known to mankind. Here’s how dressing for success can positively impact your job hunt and career.

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“Dress how you want to be addressed” - is one of the best quotes known to mankind. Here’s how dressing for success can positively impact your job hunt and career.

Photo credit: senivpetro

It's no secret that what you wear to a job interview or work may boost your chances of getting the job, and enhance your career and overall well-being, but it's still something that many of us overlook. Wearing clothes that make you feel confident and professional at work may have a positive impact on your posture, mental health, and how people interact with you.

It pays to look good, especially when attending a job interview. Nobody wants to get judged because of their appearance; we'd rather be hired because of our talents and abilities. However, whether you like it or not, looks are important in an interview and on the job.

Your appearance may convey to potential employers information about your drive, judgment, professionalism, and "fit" within the organization. If you want to command respect at an interview, dress professionally - do a little digging on the organization's dress code.

Let’s get one thing straight, you don’t have to wear a suit, tie, heels, or blazer to look good, you just need to pair the right clothes and wear the right fit, which can be achieved on a budget. Here are some trendy affordable outfit samples for men and women.


Dressing for success: why your interview appearance matters

From first impressions to final results, your appearance holds a lot of power in helping recruiters decide whether you’re a good fit or not. I had a friend who attended an interview for a role she really wanted and she got turned down for the most ridiculous reason - her acrylic nails were too long. Yup, you read that right - the recruiter told her that they absolutely loved her but for that reason alone they felt she wasn’t going to be a culture fit for their organization. Personally, I thought it was a terrible reason to turn down a qualified candidate, but their organization, their rules.

As dress codes relax, an increasing number of people regard traditional professional attires as outdated. Even in an interview, it's easy to convince yourself that you don't want to appear "uptight," so you may dress down a little and hurt your chances of winning the job. I’m not saying you should dress like a banker but you will do yourself a great good if you go the extra mile to look good – whether it’s a virtual interview or physical.

Here’s how dressing for success can help:


  • Skyrockets your confidence - When you look good, you feel good. It doesn’t only affect how others look at you but how you perceive yourself and trust me when I say, your self-image is crucial. Nobody can claim that they don't experience a "look at me" moment when they dress nicely. It’s not only about the type of clothes you wear but how you pair them and the colour selection.


  • Creates a long-lasting good first impression -  A hiring manager forms the first opinion about you in the first few seconds. The consequences of this first impression, known as the primacy effect, bear substantial weight in the final recruiting decision following the interview. The way you dress and present yourself as you enter the room or on a video call has a significant impact on your initial impression. Looking good alone does not get you a job, but it does support the messages you deliver throughout the interview.


  • Dress how you want to be addressed - Imagine arriving into an interview looking scruffy and rough, your shirt is rumpled, your hair is unkempt, and you just don't seem decent; how do you demand mega bucks when asked about your salary expectations, assuming the interviewer even asks? No one will appreciate you if you don't look nice, especially if your appearance doesn't match your CV - by the way, you don't have to wear fancy clothes to seem decent. When your presence demands respect, you will receive it.

So whether you’re looking to work at a bank, an agency, a marketing firm, a law firm or even in tech, you have to look the part to play the part. Take a deeper look into how employees in your industry dress and position yourself for success. There are tons of places to shop on a budget, ask and you shall receive. Even if you can't afford to buy new clothes, you may wear your old ones with flair as long as you wash, iron, and match them properly.

So back to the question - Can dressing for success help to get you the job you want? The answer is absolutely YES! Need some more insights into what to wear and what not to wear for a job interview? Here are some looks you can never go wrong with.

Written by

Eseosa Osayimwen

Excited about creating content that drives revenue, build trust and tells stories.

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