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What to Wear to a Job Interview

What to Wear to a Job Interview

We at Boardroom Ties have some very simple beliefs concerning proper career attire, clothing and presentation.


If you don't look the part
You won't get the part


Appropriate Interview Clothing
If you will be interviewing, please remember that no matter what industry you are seeking a position in, your resume and experience will do most of the heavy lifting to get you into the door.

If you don't currently have a well written resume, you can check which has some wonderful resume designer resources.

If you need help polishing your interview skills prior to your interview, you can purchase many books on the interview process at

Your appearance - if not appropriately dressed, will destroy everything that your background and resume have accomplished. Remember, up to the minute you step foot into the interviewers office - it was your resume and background that got you there. Now is the time to risk nothing when it comes to proper clothing for your interview.

Remember that 80% of the first impression an interviewer gets of you is visual and formed in the first two minutes of meeting you.

How To Dress For a Job Interview

Wear a suit
Wearing a navy blue, black or dark grey suit is preferable. 

If you can, purchase at least two new suits that you will be able to wear for the first two interviews with the same organization. If it's not in your budget to purchase suits prior to interviews, take one out from your closet - preferably one right from the dry cleaners and take a close look at the suit looking for frays, loose buttons and that shiny look some suits get when they've been ironed too much.  Inspect the seat on the slacks, inner thighs and the top of the thighs looking for wear or shine.  Inspect your jacket and look at the lapels and shoulders for wear or shine.

Wear a white shirt

Why wear white? White is the perfect canvas for your suit and silk tie. It's that simple. Don't overly complicate the look. The shirts should be freshly pressed. Shirts can be straight collar, tab collar or button down.

Wear an appropriate silk necktie
Coordinating the necktie with the suit is a great way to start but don't try matching the suit exactly. You are not going for the Al Capone look. The tie should be preferably made of silk with a small pattern. Larger patterns are loud, and thats not really a message you want to send.

For business, a gentleman's silk tie should be equally balanced to reflect first the organization and then the personality of person wearing it. Do not - and we cannot overemphasize this - do not wear cartoon ties or even symbol ties. Symbol ties have money signs, or stethoscopes or just about any symbol synonymous with an industry or profession. Neckties worn for interviews should not be loud or too colorful - stick with a conservative look. Some of the more popular necktie colors for interview clothing are blue ties and burgundy ties.  Once you know what color suit you'll be wearing, pick a tie and ask us if it goes - drop us a quick note. We would be more than happy to give you our opinion prior to your purchase.

Yes - wear them, and stay away from loafers - too casual. Our recommended shoe is a lace up cap toe - in black. Please ensure that the shoes are clean, polished and do not have rounded heels or overly worn soles. These are all signs that you don't care and - if you don't care about yourself, you will probably care even less about the organization and it's employees.

Always stay with the basics - black. If you order a necktie from us, we will always include a free pair of black dress socks with your order - just in case.

Career Clothing
We feel that executives and professionals should very much look the part that they play. Appropriate corporate attire is an important element in everyone's careers.

Today, the reversal of the dot com dress style is evident in many more corporations, and not only in cities. We find that more and more suburban corporate parks have gone from khakis to suits. For positions from managers all the way up to boardroom directors, suits and more formal clothing is now very much required.

With the suit comes new challenges such as how to match. Again, we cannot stress this enough, your career clothing should be a harmoniously blended reflection of the industry you are in, your organization and personal style.

If you need further guidance concerning men's styles and assembling an appropriate career wardrobe, there are many books published on the subject that can assist you in defining your look - or, ask us!.

Selecting the right necktie
In selecting the right neckties - be careful not to overdress for the position. Yes, you can overdress, and the impression that is left is hard to overcome.

Let's assume that you wear an expensive designer suit and tie - now let's assume that this is your first job. What does that say about you and your attitude?

We believe the best guide in choosing the right necktie is starting with the price. Modesty counts - don't overspend.

Let us explain.

Our rule of thumb is, take your age and add the number of years of experience you have for the particular position you are applying for and multiply that by 2 - this quick calculation should give you the approximate maximum retail price of a tie.

This we feel is a very conservative approach to looking good, but not outside of the realm of possibilities.

So as an example - If you are 25 and have 5 years experience, you should not buy a tie that retails for more than about $60 dollars.

If you are 40 and have 15 years of experience, you should not buy a tie that retails for more than $110 dollars.

As we said, this is simply a guide, you should let your better judgment and your understanding of the corporate culture of the company you are interviewing be your final decision maker.

Basics in coordinating your neckties with your clothing.

Allow us to inspire is a list of coordinating styles

Blue Suit:

For blue suits, try matching:

red silk ties, burgundy silk ties, yellow silk ties or gold silk ties

As an alternative try matching the following:

dark green silk ties, black silk ties, dark blue silk ties or a shade of purple or deep violet, with a faint neat pattern or stripes.

Black Suit:
For black suits, try matching:
red silk ties, burgundy silk ties, yellow silk ties or gold silk ties which generally work best with a black suit.

Let us direct you at this point to what we think are appropriate:

For entry level position try our Joseph Abboud silk ties

For middle & senior management level try our mens silk ties from our luxury neckwear category.

College Interview?
As an alternative, for your first interview, try one of our college ties. Our college neckties are perfect for first interviews and are conservative yet, very stylish.

For additional information, please visit College Career Day Interviews or College Admission Interviews

In Conclusion Dressing appropriately depends very much on how carefully you craft your image.

Consider the following in this order:

1. Type of organization

2. Your position within the organization

3. Your general likes and dislikes

Of course you know that these three rules have no bearing on casual and social dressing... when it comes to that the one rule that applies is "have fun"

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Job interviews always produce better results with a brand new tie.
Take a quick look at what your outfit could use.

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