Your image speaks volumes about who you are. A potential employer will form an opinion of you within seconds of meeting you. Image is not just about the way you dress – it’s the way you present yourself (grooming, attitude, confidence and body language).
Regardless of the work environment, the first impression you make should be a professional one, whether you are in a role that has customer contact or not.
Planning starts with researching your potential employer and their dress code so you look like you will fit in. Do your research – check out their website, don’t be afraid to ask what is appropriate and if you have the opportunity, look at what others are wearing in a role similar to you.
Different industries have different expectations of what is an appropriate dress code and it can vary depending on the company. For example, a creative agency will notice if you look innovative, while a health or hospitality company will look for someone who appears approachable.
Always consider the weather and time of the year – you want to look like you have put some thought into your dress. Similarly consider the work environment, whether it’s onsite, outdoors or in an office.
Let’s start with the basics-good grooming opens doors so don’t allow little details to let you down. It goes without saying you will present yourself as clean and fresh, from your morning shower, shining hair, clean shaven (or trimmed beard) and flawless natural makeup.
Your clothes need to be clean, in good condition and freshly ironed, and your shoes clean and polished (if necessary). Look out for missing buttons, dropped hems or holes. Smart dressing shows you pay attention to detail, while poor dressing is interpreted as the amount of detail you put into your work.
Well in advance of your interview, make sure you have appropriate interview garments and everything fits correctly. Try everything on so you can overview your whole image with the aid of a full-length mirror.
Prepare your outfit the night before so you don’t stress or waste time getting ready on the day.
Body language and etiquette
If you have positive body language you appear as energetic and efficient. Always offer a firm handshake and keep a composed posture during the interview with a friendly smile. Remember to maintain eye contact as it shows confidence and is the best way to engage with a potential employer.
If you look good, you feel good, it boosts your confidence and others will notice. Feeling confident will help keep you calm answering any challenging questions that may arise. – It’s all about your attitude and how you look and feel – hold your head high and be proud to be the unique person that is you!
Remember that your image speaks a lot before you do, and more importantly, remember you’ve got this!
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