How to Dress: A Guide for Corporate Attire and Apparel

In all first meetings, whether it is casual or business, a person’s looks play a large part in forming the initial impression about them. This goes far beyond just clothing and includes grooming and unconscious body language. Impressions formed by the first few glances of a person impact thoughts about their personality, diligence and intelligence. First impressions tend to last a while and can be hard to shake off. When it comes to work and business, it definitely pays to find out about the company’s culture and dress code and determine how people at your level dress. A tip for dressing for job interviews is to dress as one would for a client meeting: a little more formally than day-to-day business wear. This will help project an attitude of confidence and professionalism.

General Dress Guidelines and Tips

Dress Tips for Men

Dress Tips for Women

Dressing on a Budget

 Doing Your Research

A general rule of thumb is to always dress slightly above the position that you are currently in or one that you may be interviewed for. Most company websites or human resources departments will be able to offer some insight into the dress code. When transferring to a new field or industry, consult employment agencies, professionals or even friends and family who may be knowledgeable. Most customer service industries such as insurance, banking and law require more formal dress than creative fields like IT, advertising, design or sales. Despite these differences, it is best to approach an interview in formal attire. This conveys to the interviewer that the candidate is serious about the position and can be counted on to appear professionally in the job. When starting in a new job, the supervising boss or HR manager can help supply information (usually printed) on the official company dress code regulations. For the first few days, dress more conservatively until you have become more comfortable in understanding the dress code.

Dress Code Policies and Law

Dress codes are put in place by companies to help lay down certain acceptable standards for apparel and appearance by employees. It also reflects on the company as a whole, especially when employees are required to meet customers or clients. Failure to comply with a company’s dress code would usually result in a couple of verbal warnings by the immediate supervisor or boss. Additional infractions would be raised to formal warnings by the human resources department with the possibility of suspension or firing. Although there is no federal law that addresses specific dress code violations, companies are permitted to enforce dress codes among employees both for work place safety as well as a business interest.

Dress Examples: