Navy blue with black trousers, two-piece black suit, or a two-piece navy blue suit all are great options for a business formal interview. But if you really want to kill it with your attire put more emphasis on the details.
Don’t stress over colors. Pick a solid black, navy or grey suit and call it a day.
What really matters are the little things. These are what make you stand out from the rest of the college grads and newcomers looking for work.
Then again, there’s always the option of relying on a great resume, but when you’re going up against a million and one other potential hires who are equally qualified how will you separate yourself? Great handshake? Your internship with at a tech startup? Not likely.
If you really want to separate yourself from the pack it starts with a great first impression. You won’t win over an interviewer with a verbal assault of your qualifications and past achievements alone.
It takes the first 5–15 minutes for an interview to make a decision. That decision is being made the moment they lay eyes on you.
Use the way you dress to make those first few seconds count.
It’s what in the suit that counts
If you’re really concerned with the color of a suit, a rich navy blue would be best (in my opinion). But there is more to a suit than just the colors.
The construction of a suit is what helps it stand out. Little details in the suit make it more distinctive. And when most guys will be wearing the same colors anyway, you’re going to need a way stand out.
When choosing a suit focus on:
- Fit — The most important aspect of a suit. Find a great tailor to take make the right adjustments for a sleek silhouette
- Lapels — A generous, wide lapel gives the suit a lux appearance. This can further be enhanced with wide peaked lapels
- Shoulders — Most American suits have a strong shoulder which is very common in the corporate setting. For a different look go for a natural, unstructured shoulder (very Italian).
- Breasts — If they are liberal with the dress code you could pull off a double-breasted. If they are more conservative, a two button single-breast jacket is your best bet.
- Pants — Find a tailor and ask for a 2-inch cuff with no break at the bottom. This is your go-to. Pockets — Get a little creative and find a suit with a ticket pocket
- Shirt — I know, it’s not a part of a suit. But a crisp, light blue shirt will go farther than a white one.
A very important part of suiting that men either do wrong or don’t do at all is accessorizing.
My eyes have seen many of swollen tie knots, improperly place tie bars and empty chest pocket. Even the watches are hard to look at.
Whoever tells you to wear a rubber strap sports watch with your suit is not your friend. The only impressive thing about wearing one of these is seeing a guy who managed to get it through shirt sleeve.
Accessories are meant to enhance a suit. They shouldn’t distract from staple pieces nor should be the focal point. They should only be visible enough to make a subtle statement.
Do your suit justice and accessorize the right way with a great:
- Tie — Anything with texture. A woven silk from Tiebar ($19) should do the trick.
- Tie bar — Should cover between half and 3/4 of the tie (max) and sit between the third and fourth button of your shirt
- Pocket square — Get one, it won’t bite you. Buy a white pocket square ($10), fold it up into a square, and slide it in your chest pocket
- Dress watch — The slimmer the better. If you’re on a budget Timex has the best for under $200
Get off to a good start with the way you dress. Your first impression doesn’t begin when you open your mouth, it starts the moment they see you.