Don’t dress for the part you are given, dress for the part you want. Working at a dead end? There’s something you need to remember. A suit, is a suit, is a suit, is a suit. You don’t have to buy an Armani Suit if you can’t afford it because any suit is a…you get it.
Presentation for both yourself and your resume is extremely important. Competition is stiff now more than ever, and it might be that you have to do some psychological conditioning to get a paycheck. To get the job, you need to follow some natural human interaction rules.
1. Are you looking for a promotion? Start dressing for your new role.
Herein lay your number one key to success. Are you working at the front desk but wish you could get a raise up to HR or perhaps over to the sales team? Scoop out how the majority of the coveted department are dressing and start to mimic their clothing. It might sound ridicules. You don’t want to seem like one of those boys who gets Justin Beiber’s haircut to attract girls, but consider this. Do you remember what your high school cafeteria looked like? The Goths sat together, drama nerds sat in their little group? An office is not much different. There might not be a Mean Girl like Regina Gorge in your office but there are certainly divisions that happen naturally. Accountants just have more to talk about with other accountants. Now put all of that together and you’ll understand exactly how important it is to be the part you want. If you don’t fit in right away, edge yourself in, make yourself acquainted with the right people and express the reasons for your interest, explain why you know you are a fit. You have certainly envisioned yourself there, so don’t be afraid to explain your ideas. You have to really see yourself in that role so that others can see you in it. Of course once you get comfortable you can relax and show your uniqueness, but if you are not willing to initially put forward the effort fit into a group, perhaps it’s not the best idea to try to move up there.
2. Don’t come under-dressed for your first impression….ever.
With the short exception of retail jobs, it’s really easy to come underdressed to an interview. I am not trying to undermine retail; I am just referring to the easy to spot uniform most retail stores expect their employees to wear. If you’re looking for a waterslide in Target you look for someone in a red polo and khakis, and if you’re looking to get a deal on a printer at Best Buy you look for a blue shirt and khakis.
If you are going to discuss your finances with an investment banker, you will expect to see suit or at least a button up shirt, tie and slacks when you get to his office. Consider yourself the same way. It’s the association game. Picture the position you want, then consider the most relevant clothing—dress like that, but better.
Creative role? Same applies here, picture a graphic designer, now remove the tee and messy hair, add hair gel and a button up at least until you’ve made the perfect impression and viola! You got yourself the graphic designer the employer is expecting. Archetypes might be frustrating for some to deal with, but tell me the first image that pops into your head when I say Wicked Witch to prove me otherwise.
Guess which one gets the Green Light?
3. Make Sure Your Resume does the same thing for you.
Now that you’ve made sure you have a great image off paper, make sure your paper (or digital resume) looks fitting as well. Make sure its language and appearance, much like you in person, corresponds to the company you are applying to. Funny pictures applied to your resume and sarcastic remarks will only be appreciated by other companies that are known for liking funny pictures and sarcastic remarks. There is still a thin line here, don’t make inappropriate jokes: just because the company seems to make a lot of them, doesn’t mean their HR department will appreciate it. For example, sending over a picture of Nick Cage titled Resume to work as a teller in a major bank will sent you right into the recycling bin.
Same goes when sending a boring resume with just your qualifications and no bacon over to a place like CollegeHumor.com. When countless advisors say, make your resume stand out, they don’t mean just put pretty borders on it. They mean, know what your boring competition is likely to put on their resume (Word, Quark experience) and change it up to make it more interesting (in addition to knowing Word and Quark, I can write at lighting fast speeds in a language that is quickly dying—proper English). Again, consider where you are sending it and make sure that it’s not a prim corporation where they will certainly not appreciate your splendorous skills).
Do we want to admit that appearance means a lot? That everyone is a tad shallow and based on a majority of Youtube comments, extremely judgmental? No. But is it the truth? Please comment and let me know when it’s worked otherwise.