Proper Attire

There are no second chances on first impressions! You’ve certainly seen people who not matter where they are or what they are doing, they just look great. They always have the look. Many would say that they have a knack for dressing, for looking correct at all times.


How you appear to your potential employer may very well determine whether or not they interviewer will consider you for a position within their organization. First impressions often influence the interviewers attitude toward you.


The Knack Takes the NAC!!!


This knack sounds so mysterious…it’s very simple if you have the NAC! And when you are done with this Brief, you will have the NAC. You will look top notch, making the best first impressions! The NAC is as simple as this – you must be Neat, Appropriate and Clean. It is nothing more, nothing less.


Neatness Counts!


Neat is an often overlooked part of creating the total look. When we speak of neatness, we are talking not only about the clothing you wear, but about you, yourself! Once again, remember – you are selling a total package here. You are selling not only your abilities, but also how you are able to present yourself. An employer wants to be able to feel good about his or her employees. After all, the employees are a reflection of the employer.


First Impressions Include piercing…

Hairstyle –


When a person meets you for the first time, he or she will make eye contact with you, thus your hairstyle will immediately be one of the first items of your appearance that will be evaluated. Is it neat? Is it natural? Do you have to constantly brush hair out of your eyes? Does your hairstyle have a style? Is your style too high maintenance that it can be messed up just walking from the car to the interviewer’s office? Is the style (here comes another part of your NAC) appropriate for the type of job for which you wish to be considered?


Clothing –


This is so important. Even if you’ve found a perfect outfit, try to wear it before your interview. If the garments wrinkle easily, they aren’t appropriate for the interview. Your attire speaks volumes about you. If your clothing is wrinkled, or your general appearance is disheveled, this screams that you are not a very neat or orderly person. Employers like neat and orderly, so be sure your clothing is neat, doesn’t wrinkle, stays in place and doesn’t require attention to keep buttons closed or collars laying right. You need to focus on the interview.


Shoes –

Neatness counts even down to your toes! Be sure that your shoes are well shined and show a “well-cared-for” appearance. Take care that the heels are not run down. These seem like small items, but your attention to detail

Other –

Please, no facial piercing, tongue jewelry, visible tattoos, heavy make-up, short skirts, baseball caps, stained clothing or anything that draws attention to you.


What is Appropriate…


This is an integral part of having the NAC. You must have the ability to know what appropriate dress for a job interview is. This  takes common sense and some research.


  • Find a way to visit your potential employer before your interview date and see firsthand the attire of the current employees. If you can’t visit the site of your interview, visit a comparable organization and note the styles worn by the employees.


  • Figuring out what to wear also requires common sense. Just because something may be in style does not make it appropriate. This is especially important when putting together your overall look. A dozen earrings in each ear may be in style, but not appropriate when applying for a job.


  • Remember, you are selling yourself. This is not the time to make a political statement, advertise your personal viewpoints on life or highlight your cultural differences.


  • Dressing up is better that dressing down! Employers expect job seekers to present their best when applying for employment. They will assume that you have elected to dress and present your best. What will an employer assume about you when you wear your favorite t-shirt purchased last summer at the beach?


  • Dress appropriate at all times. Many job seekers dress casually when filling out applications only to find that they are given a screening interview. Their casual appearance tells the employer that they are casual in their approach to a job…not the right impression!


Clean…Squeaky Clean To Be Precise


The last, and probably most important, part of having the NAC to dressing well for an interview is being clean. This means you and your clothing. Not a detail can be missed. Your clothing must be immaculate. Be thorough when you select the clothing you are going to wear. Look for little stains, and if you find them, wash or have the item cleaned before you wear it for an interview. Don’t let a thing get past you…look over each item before you put it on…front and back.


And go beyond just looking at the item. Give it the sniff test.


If it looks clean, but has an aroma to it, it is not clean. We are not talking just body odor here…anything other than a clean, fresh scent is not acceptable.


Does it small like tobacco from the restaurant where you hung out last night? If it does, don’t wear it until it is fresh to the nose, as well as the eye!


This cleanliness issue also includes you. This means that you must be extra clean and fresh. If you are on who gets extremely nervous at the thought of an interview, shower right before the interview and apply extra antiperspirant. If you have two interviews in one day, and if time allows, freshen up between the two. Stress ca makes us perspire more than normal, and our deodorants can give out. Don’t let a simple thing like this ruin your first impression.



Putting Yourself Together…


NAC requires all three parts to be in place in order for you to get the most benefit from having it. Having the NAC means that you watched every little detail of your appearance. Two out of three doesn’t count. Use a checklist to be sure…


  • My hairstyle is neat. My clothing is neat.
  • My hairstyle, clothing and accessories are appropriate.
  • My body is clean. My hair is clean. My clothing is clean. I am very presentable and look my best!


I am ready for the interview!!!







Workforce Investment Solutions of Macon and DeWitt Counties, Illinois is funded through the Workforce Investment Act.