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Dressing for success Lesley Deugo, York Region Learning Connections

About the Author

Lesley Deugo is a Youth Outreach Worker for YorkYouth and Discover, at York Region Learning Connections in Richmond Hill. YorkYouth is a youth employment initiative delivered by the York Region District School Board, providing outreach and support in Southern York Region. For more information, visit

Most people have heard the saying that you should "dress for success". When it comes to job interviews, dressing appropriately is something that needs to be taken seriously if you want to be hired. Although many people may say that first impressions are not that important, in an interview, your first impression may be your only impression. If you make the error of underdressing, employers may perceive you as sloppy, unorganized, or unqualified. However, by following a few rules of thumb, you can easily dress appropriately for an interview without feeling undue stress or purchasing a completely new wardrobe.
  1. Always remember to be professional. This means that you should wear something neutral, with solid colors that are coordinated.

  2. Never show up to an interview wearing something that you would wear out with friends. This means for women, don't over do your makeup, or wear a large amount of jewelry. For men, baseball caps and baggy jeans should never be worn in a professional environment.

  3. In terms of shoes, do not wear your street shoes or sneakers. Remember that you want to appear as professional as possible, so wearing dress shoes is usually the code for both men and women.

  4. For women, if you plan on wearing a dress or skirt, remember that you are attending an interview, not going out. Therefore, all dresses and skirts should be longer and not reveal too much skin.

  5. Both men and women should be neatly groomed with clean nails, tidy hair, and smelling fresh without over doing the perfume and aftershave.

By following these simple rules, you can achieve an appropriate professional look with the wardrobe you currently have. If you are interviewing at several companies, you can mix and match your pieces to create different looks. Although it is essential to look professional, it is also important to be yourself. Have confidence in your professional look and you will always appear dressed - and ready - for success.

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