The style that will land the job

The style that will land the job

The levels of influence members of the millennial generation have on the fashion and practically every market are unmatched by any past generation. What speaks volumes of that influence is the fact that even high-fashion retailers have been adjusting their designs to cater to this demographic.

However, the job market is not as accommodating. Although it’s true that the office dress codes keep getting more relaxed, spurred in part by the influx of millennials in the workforce, there are still certain boundaries and lines that are not to be crossed. 

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It’s clear that a large discrepancy is present between the employers’ expectations and how millennial candidates present themselves, and according to Nicole Williams, career expert at LinkedIn, the problem with appearance is that it translates to performance; even if the prospective employer does not think that less of you, they are subconsciously questioning your abilities.

So, how does one bridge that gap? The answer lies in compromise.  Therefore, in order to help you navigate the corporate waters and swim with the best of them, we have put together a comprehensive millennial style guide that will convince them that you are indeed the right person for the job.

Strict corporate style

One of the crucial steps to take prior to an important interview is doing your homework. For instance, if you’re applying for a position at a corporate law firm, jeans and a ruffle off-the-shoulder top are absolutely unacceptable. A corporate job calls for a sleek, polished and conservative look, therefore, a pencil skirt, stilettos, and quality blouse are a must. The blouse should be buttoned up, so as not to show too much skin. If pencil skirts are not exactly your forte, a pair of classic high-waist black pants is a perfectly suitable alternative.

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Still, there is a smidge of wiggle room for you to put a personal stamp. For instance, the pencil skirt can be navy blue with subtle stripes that are on point and in style. A well-tailored, fitted leather jacket could also be acceptable, but when in doubt, it’s always better to be overdressed than the other way around.

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Business casual

Applying for a job in a company that fosters a slightly more relaxed, casual business dress code policy allows for certain prints and garments to enter the mix. While it’s important to exude professionalism, in this type of workplace you have the liberty for small experiments, and going for something interesting, like a blazer in a subtle checkered pattern might just be a winning combination. As for shirts and blouses, the first lesson is to steer clear of synthetic fabrics – they are not breathable, and do not do you any favours in your attempts to look polished and sleek.

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Another wonderfully polished option can be found in a combination of a just above the knee A-line dress in a subtle geometric print and a fitted black blazer. With this outfit, you can even pull off a pair of patent-leather flats and still ooze elegance without compromising your love of current trends.

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Business casual provides a number of options, so even a pop of color would not be a mistake. A midi sleeveless dress in burnt orange complemented by a pale-beige slightly oversized blazer would present you in a good light. It shows that you are both stylish and professional at the same time, and this type of attire is best suited when attending an interview for a creative position.

Colours matter

It is clear that a right outfit can make all the difference, and a proper one is far more than the sum of its parts. Aside from the right fit, length, level of skin coverage, a great portion of the impression we make is accredited to the colours we choose.

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For instance, to establish trust and credibility, always go with blue. When your wish is to blend in, grey is your best option, and if your goal is to appear professional and confident – always turn to black or dark blue.

The little things

It may have never crossed your mind, but your accessories say plenty about you, and wearing the wrong ones can definitely impact the success of your interview. Whether it is rings, necklaces, earrings, never wear anything that is too flashy and ostentatious, as it will shift the focus from what you are saying, and this is definitely not your goal.

Also, neatness is important; clean and minimal makeup, neat hair – these things speak volumes about you without you saying a word.

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The lesson is – dress for the job you want, not the one you have. There are plenty of other places where your sense of style can shine through, so don’t be reluctant to make compromises when your future career is at stake.

Author: Sophia Smith


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