What To Wear to A Job Interview: Men’s Attire Etiquette Quiz
1. True or False: A charcoal gray suit and black loafers with a prominent designer buckle is the mark of professional polish.
False. A pair of loafers detracts from the professionalism of your sharp looking charcoal gray suit. And while you are at it, get rid of that big buckle on the side of your shoe – unless you are dressed down and casual. P. S. Toss the square toes and tire- tread soles.
2. True or False: A crisp white shirt is a boring choice and shouldn’t be worn unless you want to come across as lacking personality.
False. Oh contraire! A nicely pressed, crisp white shirt is the most powerful color choice and should be a staple in every executive wardrobe. Wait for a sale and buy them by the bushel.
3. True or False: A black suit is the best option when interviewing for a job.
False. Black is a harsh color and can easily come across as morbid, severe and unflattering to a sallow complexion. Select a dark gray or dark navy suit as a better alternative.
4. True or False: Never wear red to a job interview.
False. If you are considering wearing your holiday velvet red jacket to your job interview, the answer is a resounding “NO!” however; a tasteful repp tie with a splash of deep red attracts attention to your face and leaves a favorable first impression.
5. True or False: During the hot summer months, a good quality linen sports jacket sends the message of “cool and confident”.
False. There is nothing cool or confident about a wrinkled item of clothing. You’re best choice is a 100% worsted wool suit, which will breathe and allow you to feel and look cool and confident…sans the wrinkles.
6. True or False: An expensive watch with a splash of a few diamonds enhances a man’s style.
False. Your employer may wonder what you have been selling or embezzling if you are applying for your first job wearing so much bling. The most professional choice is a conservative watch with a leather or link band. And, no, a sport watch with a suit is another job interview faux pas.
7. True or False: When walking in to your job interview, all three buttons of your suit jacket should be buttoned, until you sit down.
False. The standard rule is Sometimes-Always-Never, button the first button sometimes, the second button always and never button the third button. And speaking of never, don’t attempt to wear a 4-button suit unless you are very tall, lean and play for a winning basketball team.
True. While it would be very tempting to slip on your broken in Sperry’s, it would be to your advantage to invest in a good pair of professional looking shoes to complete your corporate look. Again, wait for sales or check the outlet stores and buy the best quality shoe you can afford.
9. True or False: Your socks should match your pants.
True. Your socks should match the color of your trousers rather than your shoes. Why? Because if your socks are the exact color of your shoes it will give the illusion of a boot – and wearing boots with a suit is a big no no! And, that’s right guys, even if you live in Texas…boots do not belong at a job interview (for more of my Texas rant see number 13).
10. True or False: Shoes with tassels are a good business shoe investment.
True. Unless the tassel is the size of a pompom, a nice leather shoe with a conservative tassel is a good choice for a Casual Friday look.
11. True or False: If your interviewer suggests you wear Business Casual to the second interview you are safe to wear jeans and a golf shirt.
False. Unless stated in their company policy manual, (and you don’t know because you have not been hired yet!), the most appropriate Business Casual choice is a nice pair of slacks, a button down shirt, a sport coat and a good quality pair of leather loafers.
12. True or False: A sport coat always requires a tie.
False. A sport coat is a casual, yet professional version of Business Casual and does not require a tie.
13. Question from a reader: I’m from Texas; can I wear my boots to a job interview?
Please listen very carefully …absolutely, positively, absolutely not. I am sorry, BUT, we already fight a stereotype here in Texas and contrary to popular belief, not everyone drives a truck, owns a horse, milks a cow and wears a 10-gallon hat. If you are applying for a job in ranching, farming, or drilling, wear your boots with pride and discretion, but if you are applying for a conservative position at a bank, law office or accounting firm, in or out of the state of Texas, refer to numbers 1 – 12! Take this advice and you can consider this bullet “Lucky 13!”
Good luck on your job interview.