Most people tend to get their first job when they are in high school or just starting college. It can be an exciting time to get your first real job, but before you can start working, you need to nail the interview process. Many people spend most of their preparation time focusing on how to answer common interview questions, but you also need to spend some time on your interview attire and how you come across to the hiring manager.
Even if you are applying to a more casual workplace, you should still dress professionally. For boys, khakis and a polo or button-up shirt is fine. Ties generally are not necessary for fast food or retail jobs. However, a nice business suit is good for more professional settings. Girls should wear a knee-length skirt with a blouse. A nice pair of slacks is also acceptable. A single piece of jewelry is fine and can even be beneficial to make yourself stand out.
If you are unsure about how to dress, you can contact the human resources department of the company you are applying for and see if they have any advice for good attire. If you cannot get that information, it is always a good idea to err on the side of caution and dress up as opposed to dressing down. You are not going to hurt your chances by wearing a tie when you do not have to. However, wearing a t-shirt when the situation obviously calls for something more formal could instantly lose you the job.
Mistakes to Avoid When It Comes to Interview Attire
Since many teenagers are applying to jobs for the first time, they often make some very easy-to-avoid mistakes. You can get ahead of the curve by watching out for these interview errors. Many girls have a tendency to overdo it on the makeup and perfume. A little bit of makeup is fine, but you should make sure you are creating a natural look. Layering on your makeup too thick can be a distraction. Likewise, you should skip the perfume on interview day. You never know if your interviewer has a sensitive sense of smell, and too much perfume can cause him or her to sneeze incessantly. The best piece of advice to follow is to keep it simple.
Boys should be well-groomed before going into their interview. That means showering the morning of and shaving. Cleaning under your fingernails is also important. Proper hygiene should be practiced by everyone. That includes brushing your teeth before the interview. The hiring manager is going to be sitting directly across from you, and you are going to be talking a lot. Do not give the interviewer a reason to focus on your breathe instead of your answers. Chewing gum is very impolite, so spit it out before walking into the office.
Additional Interview Attire Tips for Teenagers
You should have at least one good outfit prepared for job interviews. That way when you actually schedule your first interview, you will not have to run around town trying to find the right clothes. If you are not sure if the outfit you have prepared is good enough, have your parents or a teacher take a look at it. They will definitely tell you whether they think it is appropriate for a professional setting.
You also want to be careful of showing an excessive amount of skin. That means no short skirts, no low cut pants, no tank tops, no shorts and no crop tops. You need to dress as though you already have the position, and that includes dressing according to company protocol. If you have any tattoos, then you want to make sure that they are covered up as well as they can. Most employers probably will not mind too much and they should not discriminate against you for having tattoos, but it is always a good idea to play it safe and look as professional as you can.
The clothes you wear are all part of making a good first impression on the hiring manager. In order to make this first impression great as opposed to just good, make sure you give the interviewer a firm handshake, maintain consistent eye contact and smile. You should have a copy of your resume with you in case the manager asks for it, and you should also have a list of references prepared. With the proper planning, you will be ready to ace that interview.