Job Interview Tips: Dress like an Executive

Preparing for your first job interview for a position you greatly desire goes beyond polishing your speech on your leadership skills. Whether or not you believe in the impact of first impressions, trust experts on this one: you have to dress for success. And if you want to become an executive, it’s important to dress like an executive.

After all, your style of clothing makes a statement, and at the job interview, that statement should be: “I am able to manage myself, and I am definitely capable of managing others.”

Job Interview Tips Dress like an Executive

Suit Style

The best thing to start with is some research on the company culture; maybe you can get some hints on their dress code. If not, no worries – as you are applying for an executive position, you cannot fail when following a few simple rules. Dark grey, black or navy blue are the most indicated colours for your suit. Before making a decision though, exclude patterned materials. You will want to save that for your shirt or tie.

Shirt Choice

Taking no risks means sticking to a plain white, freshly pressed shirt. This way you will have ‘organised’ written all over you. Being a bit daring translates into choosing a patterned item. In any case, ensure that your shirt and tie don’t run for a ‘stripe competition’. It’s only one of them that can have a stronger pattern. And that doesn’t read as ‘flashy’. Keep it smart, keep it formal!

Tie Option

So far, so good. Next step is about opting for the proper tie. As this is the most prominent piece of clothing you will wear, take your time in picking the winner. There’s a series of aspects for you to consider:

  • The Material – your only option in terms of material is silk. This strikes as a sign of professionalism.
  • The Colour – the ‘hot’ color image consultants recommend is burgundy. Nevertheless, going for red has connotations of power and influence, while wearing blue indicates stability, honesty and calm. Keep your yellow ties for future presentations and the black ones for nights out.
  • The Knot – from Four-In-Hand to the full-Windsor knots, you have quite a few alternatives. Tip: don’t opt for any of the above mentioned tie knots, as you don’t want to look either amateurish or aristocratic. A compromise between the two is the Pratt Knot – perfectly symmetrical and not oversized, it still needs to fit to your shirt’s collar.


The golden rule is: always match your belt with your shoes. Black or dark brown are the colours you are looking for.

Did you know it takes 15 to 20 seconds for the executive recruiter to form an opinion about you? Don’t underestimate the impact of your appearance. You’re saying that you would make a good executive? Then prove it!

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