Getting a job is like finding a new boyfriend. You have to be emotionally prepared to find the right one; you should know what you want; you shouldn’t seem desperate and you should be really careful what you wear in order to attract the ones who are suitable for you.
You are already aware that while it may be fine to go to a job interview for a waitress wearing a short skirt, it is extremely unprofessional to be dressed the same way on an interview for a lawyer. When you get invited to a job interview try to figure out what is the unofficial dress code in the company. It is essential to be visually recognized as one of the team before you even have the chance to say “hello”.
This rule doesn’t apply only for the interviews. Once you start your new job you will also start getting a general idea on what the possible carrier paths are. Even if there is not an official dress code, you will recognize how the managers, sales representatives and the high level specialists dress. The professionals who meet clients might seem slightly overdressed, the managers probably will be wearing formal, yet comfortable clothes and the high level technicians, well … they probably won’t care about their looks at all.
From a very early stage of your career path, people will start noticing you. Even though your skills and abilities are crucial for being excellent at your job, the decision makers in your field are more likely to promote the good employees who are easily recognized as one of them. If you wish to become a technician and the top technicians in your company are metal heads, don’t wear suit every day! Forget about the dreadlocks if you see yourself as sales manager one day… or consider getting ones if your wish is to become a creative designer.
Even if you have been working at the same position for a long time and you no longer have the opportunity to make first impression, you can start changing your wardrobe slightly. It is important to make changes little by little. Drastic changes might have the opposite effect because they seem needy and desperate.
And last but not least, be yourself and keep your own unique style! Whatever level of formality your new clothes require, do not buy anything that makes you feel uncomfortable! If you suddenly have to dress formally, don’t jump from sinkers to high heels. Use your favorite colors! Look for the clothes that you actually love, even if they are different by the ones you are used to wear.
It might take some time but it will be worth it because ones you get your promotion you will already feel confident with your looks and you will be able to focus on your new tasks and challenges.
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