It’s the morning of your big interview or the day of a career fair. You’re scrambling to find the best outfit to appear the most professional, but you don’t have anything. You’re in college so you’re probably used to wearing athletic shorts and t-shirts. Well, the “real world” has hit you and you won’t (can’t) be a student forever. Now’s the time to invest in some business professional clothing. So, what should you wear? What is “professional” attire? Here are some tips on how to dress for success and make a great first impression for the job or internship that you want!
Business Professional vs. Business Casual
Business professional, means a business suit for both men and women. You will want to dress in business professional attire for an interview or other career related events. A blue blazer and khaki pants is NOT business professional. This outfit would be considered business casual. Business casual is typically worn in a casual work environment or work event. Women wear a dress, skirt and a blouse, or a sweater set. Men wear a button down with a sport coat. Neither should wear jeans.
So how should you dress for an interview or career related events?
- Invest in a suit. You will always need a suit for various types of events, so always have one on hand.
- Make sure the suit is a neutral color like black, grey, brown or navy.
- Wear a buttoned down shirt tucked in with a belt.
- Wear a tie that compliments your suit, but not overly bright or with an unprofessional design (e.g., sports team).
- Dress socks and leather shoes that coordinate with the suit (Ex. Black shoes with black or grey suit. Brown shoes with navy or brown suit)
- Pants or skirt suits. Skirt length should be at your knee.
- Best suit colors are gray, navy, or black.
- Wear skin colored hose under skirt or pants for best fit.
- Coordinated closed toed short heels or flats.
- Wear a modest blouse that complements your suit in a conservative color.
- To be your best, you must feel your best. So be comfortable in what you are wearing.
- Wear classy, but minimal jewelry (no more than 5 pieces).
- Shower. Clean hair and body. Shave.
- Clothing must be ironed, wrinkle free, and clean.
What if I can’t get a suit in time? Look as professional as you can. For a masculine expression, wear a long sleeve, button down shirt with a tie, dress pants, dress shoes, and matching belt. For feminine expression, consider black or other dark color pants or skirt with a sweater set or coordinating jacket.
Now that you know how to put together the perfect professional look, it’s time to put it to good use. Georgia College’s networking event of the semester, the Fall Career & Internship Expo, is coming up on Wednesday, October 3rd from 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. in Magnolia Ballroom. 40+ employers will be in attendance recruiting for jobs, internships, and summer opportunities. This is a great event to explore possible career options. From freshman to seniors in any major, all GC students are encouraged to attend and start networking. For further details on the career expo and what employers will be attending, visit www.tinyurl.com/GCFall18Expo.