HELP! Job interview.. what do I buy to wear (I have zero dress attire)?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by greatfire, Sep 30, 2006.

  1. drizzt3117

    drizzt3117 Senior member

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    Here's the recipe:

    1. If you know people in that department, ask them what the interview dress code is.

    2. If you don't know anyone, walk over or call the department where the interview will be held. Ask the receptionist/secretary/administrative assistant or even the interviewer him/herself if they're the person setting up the interviews, what the dress code is.

    3. Dress accordingly using the advise given above.

    4. Shake and serve.

    Good luck!


    Honestly I think you'd be better off just wearing a suit, but if you're going to use this method, talking to an administrative assistant would probably be your best bet. If i was going to intereview someone and they called and asked me what the dress code was, they'd get big "no clue" points in my book.
     


  2. mano

    mano Senior member

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    Honestly I think you'd be better off just wearing a suit, but if you're going to use this method, talking to an administrative assistant would probably be your best bet. If i was going to intereview someone and they called and asked me what the dress code was, they'd get big "no clue" points in my book.

    That's exactly the point of this thread. He has "no clue" about the "company culture" and neither does anyone else giving advice. At least one person had the experience in which wearing a suit eliminated you out of the box. Others have the opposite experience. Your personal point of view may, or may not, fit.

    In my book, calling to ask that question would give bonus points, as it demonstrates an ability to ask a reasonable question when in doubt.

    FWIW, when I was in charge of hiring dozens of Ph.D.'s in Los Angeles during the 1980's dress made a difference, but it was by no means a deal-maker or a deal-breaker unless the interviewee was, in fact, clueless. There were a few people who dressed in shorts and sandals or something similarly innapropriately casual.

    Coming from the east coast, I was more inclined to wear a suit to an interview, or at the very least, nice slacks, a tie and a sportscoat. Many of my contemporaries, expecially those from the LA area, were considerably more casual. I tended to get offers from my interviews, but I doubt that my attire was the sole reason.

    When in doubt, ask someone who knows the answer.
     


  3. drizzt3117

    drizzt3117 Senior member

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    That's exactly the point of this thread. He has "no clue" about the "company culture" and neither does anyone else giving advice. At least one person had the experience in which wearing a suit eliminated you out of the box. Others have the opposite experience. Your personal point of view may, or may not, fit. In my book, calling to ask that question would give bonus points, as it demonstrates an ability to ask a reasonable question when in doubt. FWIW, when I was in charge of hiring dozens of Ph.D.'s in Los Angeles during the 1980's dress made a difference, but it was by no means a deal-maker or a deal-breaker unless the interviewee was, in fact, clueless. There were a few people who dressed in shorts and sandals or something similarly innapropriately casual. Coming from the east coast, I was more inclined to wear a suit to an interview, or at the very least, nice slacks, a tie and a sportscoat. Many of my contemporaries, expecially those from the LA area, were considerably more casual. I tended to get offers from my interviews, but I doubt that my attire was the sole reason. When in doubt, ask someone who knows the answer.
    In his particular case, the interview is on campus, so the career services people at his school would be the logical people to ask about interview attire, but I'll stand by my assertion that a suit is the default attire for an interview.
     


  4. mano

    mano Senior member

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    In his particular case, the interview is on campus, so the career services people at his school would be the logical people to ask about interview attire.

    That makes perfect sense.[​IMG]

    [/quote], but I'll stand by my assertion that a suit is the default attire for an interview.[/quote]

    You certainly are tenacious. Are you part terrier? [​IMG]
     


  5. greatfire

    greatfire Senior member

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    Based on what I'm reading, I think I'll get a suit. If I end up being overdressed, then I can just take off the jacket, right? Or will that be weird?

    Any suit recommendations? How about buying online. Where I go to school they don't really have stores that sell suits, so I'll have to buy something online, then hope I can find a tailor. oih, I've been googling, and haven't seen any. This is going to be an interesting week. Does the greyhound stop near any good stores in New York City (I'm in Northern NY, close to canada), or wherever I'd have to go to get a reasonably priced suit?
     


  6. mano

    mano Senior member

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    Greatfire needs a sartorial Saint Bernard.

    You seem to be an earnest young man and I wish you all the luck in the world.
     


  7. DocHolliday

    DocHolliday Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    That's exactly the point of this thread. He has "no clue" about the "company culture" and neither does anyone else giving advice. At least one person had the experience in which wearing a suit eliminated you out of the box. Others have the opposite experience. Your personal point of view may, or may not, fit.

    A suit has been default interview attire for decades. I'd hate to work at a company that would not hire someone because he adopted the standard, respectful practice. What else are they going to second-guess?
     


  8. DocHolliday

    DocHolliday Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Also, as terrible as this may sound, I would not trust the judgment of a secretary/receptionist on this matter. What the receptionist sees other workers wearing may not be the same as what's expected by the interviewer. Even what other candidates wear may not be a good barometer. The point is to get a leg up on the competition, not simply mimic them.

    Unless the field is in art or the like, I really think the odds of a suit being a drawback are far, far, far smaller than of it being an advantage.
     


  9. mano

    mano Senior member

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    You're preaching to the choir here. Interviewees, particularly for entry level positions, sometimes have to sacrifice their individuality for quirky corporate culture, or as tiecollector suggested at Intel, corporate counterculture.
     


  10. DocHolliday

    DocHolliday Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    You're preaching to the choir here. Interviewees, particularly for entry level positions, sometimes have to sacrifice their individuality for quirky corporate culture, or as tiecollector suggested at Intel, corporate counterculture.

    True dat. Didn't mean to preach to you, Mano. You were just a convenient jumping-off point. [​IMG]
     


  11. drizzt3117

    drizzt3117 Senior member

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    You're preaching to the choir here. Interviewees, particularly for entry level positions, sometimes have to sacrifice their individuality for quirky corporate culture, or as tiecollector suggested at Intel, corporate counterculture.
    That could also be a specific person/dept/position there, as in the last four to five years I have been down to Intel's HQ a few times while working for Conexant and all of the meetings were straight up business formal, and all of the management types that I've run into there were also wearing suits or sportcoats. To be fair we're talking about director and above level positions but still...
     


  12. JLibourel

    JLibourel Senior member

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    Looking at the measurements you posted, greatfire, I am surprised you feel you need an XL. I am 6'3", have a very long torso, and I am only a Long. If you have a 40" chest, I rather think a 44XL is going to look ridiculously oversized on you. I should think a 42L at most would be appropriate for you.
     


  13. javyn

    javyn Senior member

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    This ain't no 90's pre-tech bubble job, suit up. Dark grey, navy, or you could probably even get away with navy pin stripe.
     


  14. Sator

    Sator Senior member

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    People are moving away from dressing up. I have NEVER been interviewed by anyone in a suit.


    In my profession I have only been interview wearing a suit by people similarly attired.

    Wear a suit unless given unequivocably clear and specific instructions to do otherwise.
     


  15. AlanC

    AlanC Minister of Trad

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    Looking at the measurements you posted, greatfire, I am surprised you feel you need an XL. I am 6'3", have a very long torso, and I am only a Long. If you have a 40" chest, I rather think a 44XL is going to look ridiculously oversized on you. I should think a 42L at most would be appropriate for you.

    A 40" chest should wear a size 40 suit/sportcoat. You also mention wearing size 34 trousers, which is the typical corresponding trouser size to a size 40 suit. Try a 40L when you're trying on suits.
     


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