Old rules dictated that a conservative navy or grey suit, paired with a “power tie,” were the only appropriate clothes to wear to a job interview. We beg to differ. Welcome to the new job interview dress code.
First off, congratulations on scoring an interview. As men, we should dress for the job, but not too far beyond it. Ever see someone waiting for their interview in the office lobby wearing a 3-piece suit whilst everyone else is in jeans and runners? Exactly. Let us guide you through the delicate balance between fussy keener or deadbeat that begs the question: What should I wear to a job interview? Start with a tailored shirt and add to it the following:
The most formal office attire is also the easiest to execute because it doesn’t leave much open to interpretation. A dark tailored suit with a classic blue or white cotton dress shirt is key to securing a corner office, or let’s be real, a smartly outfitted cube with walls. Finish off the ensemble with a complementary tie and pocket square that enhances your look without distracting from it. Appropriate job interview attire to try include a muted patterned tie by Bellissimo, paired with subtly patterned socks for a hint of personality.
Accessory Details: A topcoat or scarf if temperatures warrant, plus a briefcase or leather laptop carrier for presentations.
Cloaked in mystery is where you’ll often find this overused directive for job interview and networking attire. Let’s decode what are appropriate clothes to wear to a job interview for a middle-of-the-road office setting. Since it’s a little ambiguous, it's better to be a little overdressed. Meaning, skip the golf shirt and slacks combo and wear a sports jacket.
It’s also the perfect instance to wear shirts that look great sans tie, such as a bold check or pattern by Grafton 1853. As your go-to, we think brands like Daniel Hechter Paris nail this look year-round.
Accessory Details: Go with a travel coat and messenger bag to carry your CV, notes or devices.
Navigating the trademark attire of start-ups, techs or creative-type jobs can be tricky. If hired, your on the job dress code may be runners and favourite team sweaters, but you’ll likely be meeting with HR, the hiring VP or above, so be aware of who you are dressing for (and how their day-to-day attire may be different from everyone else).
Unless specifically instructed, avoid anything too casual like jeans or anything resembling a graphic tee. A good option is going sockless with loafers and casual pants by Britches (read: not baggy or cargo), and a sateen or cotton shirt by Bellissimo is a neat look that conveys casual-confidence.
Accessory Details: Outerwear like a toque or parka may fly with this look, but lose the knapsack and carry any paperwork in a canvas or leather messenger bag for a more professional vibe.
Lastly, rely on the advice of internal or external recruiters, but also take a hasty look at the company’s presence on social channels to learn about their culture and environment. If it turns out you weren’t a perfect fit for the job, at least you’ll know your clothes were.