By Marky Stein Now that you’re wearing that beautiful, warm smile, let’s look at the rest of what you’re wearing. Guess what? You don’t necessarily have to go out and buy a $400 outfit to be dressed appropriately for an interview (unless you want to, of course). Maybe all you need to do is invest $5 in getting those dress slacks pressed or having that attractive blazer dry cleaned. Let’s keep it simple. Dressing up is not only a way to make you attractive; it is one of the many signals of respect you will send to the interviewer during this first 20 seconds. It says, “I respect your time enough to think carefully about my wardrobe.” Many of my clients object to dressing up for an interview. They may complain the vice president of the company is wearing shorts and sandals and has an untrimmed beard. Or the CEO is wearing Gloria Vanderbilt jeans and cowboy boots. The difference between you and the interviewer is you don’t have an office with your name on the door (yet). Before you get the job, take the time to be more formal and more conservative than you would normally be. (Then, when you’re hired, you can don your army boots, expose your tattoos, and get down to work with the best of them!) Remember, it is not the price of your clothes or how well they match the latest fashion. What makes the difference is you give the distinct appearance of having taken some time to put yourself together. A few guidelines to achieve that image follow. Men Shoes Hard-soled, hard-toed. The best colors are black or brown. Ties Conservative: black, brown, navy, or red. A solid color or a simple pattern is best. Avoid ties that are too wide or too narrow. No potentially distracting artsy or modern patterns. No pastels or flashy colors. No bow ties. Suits Matching business suits are best. If you do not have a tailored, well-fitting business suit in gray, black, navy blue, or brown, you may, as a second choice, wear pants (other than jeans) with a shirt, tie, and complementary jacket. Shirts The only type of shirt acceptable for men at a job interview, in my opinion, is a button-down shirt with a collar. White or light blue, or a shirt with very narrow and light pinstripes is best. T-shirts and turtlenecks are too casual, however tempting it may be to wear them. Jewelry Avoid wearing more than one ring per hand. Don’t wear a pinky ring. Scents Other than the soap from your shower and (preferably) unscented deodorant, do not wear any colognes or aftershaves. It’s surprising what a strong reaction people have to scents! They either love them or hate them. Don’t take the chance you might be wearing the same cologne as her ex-husband! Hair Again, the rule of thumb is conservative. No matter what the length or style of your hair, it’s worth investing a few bucks for a haircut before stepping into the competitive world of interviewing. Do not wear a hat. If you have long hair, tie it back neatly, or consider, for now, having it cut. Interviewers prefer less rather than more hair on both your head and your face. I had a client who had absolutely no job offers until he shaved off his shaggy beard. When he got a job (soon after shaving), he sure missed his beard, but he didn’t complain about earning $80,000 a year! Women Shoes Wear pumps with a medium-sized heel. Do not wear high, excessively spiky heels or boots. Black, brown, taupe, or navy is fine. Avoid flashy shoes with bright colors like red or glittery gold. No tennis shoes, open toes, or sandals. Flats may be OK for an extremely casual workplace, but low pumps are preferred. Dresses or Suits In the workshops I teach, I always have at least one woman who says, “I wore pants to the interview and I got the job!” That’s usually the case, these days if you are wearing a nicely tailored pant suit with an attractive blouse, but if you feel comfortable in a skirt and matching jacket, I recommend it! Hair and Makeup Keep it simple! Don’t allow long or wavy hair to hide your face. Consider having a touch-up color, wave, or trim. Wear lighter or less makeup than usual. Do not apply too much foundation or eye makeup. If you use hair spray, you might consider an unscented brand. Any sort of perfume-like smell from hair spray, body lotions, cologne, or perfume can be disturbing to some interviewers. When you can look in the mirror and say, “Okay, I’m ready!” you’ll know you’ve found a good combination of businesslike attire. Sorry, this event already happened! Please go to our webinar page to review our upcoming FREE webinars. You can also check out our past events in the archive section. | | PLUS, watch the video below to see J.T. interview Marky on why most job seekers won't find work without her proven tips! Marky Stein has been a career coach and public speaker for 20 years, working with professionals from more than 75 Fortune 500 companies. She currently runs a private career coaching practice in Northern California. Author of Fearless Career Change, Fearless Resumes, the career classic Fearless Interviewing, and the career compendium Get a Great Job When You Don’t Have a Job, Stein is the online job-search career and interview expert at Monster.com and has written numerous articles for www.careerjournal.com. Her website is www.markystein.com.
Whether you're a college student trying to figure out where your true calling lies, an experienced professional getting back to work, or someone just looking for a career in another field, you need to make your choice carefully. With women making considerable strides in fields that were previously male-dominated, the lines of career limitations have blurred.
There are more career choices available to women now than ever before. A woman plays many roles—sister, daughter, friend, wife, mother, confidante, breadwinner, and so on. You, being a multitasking woman, need to find a career that not only pays you well, but allows you to be a career woman without having to compromise on any of these roles.
If you think this is impossible, think again!
Lots of women have found careers that balance beautifully with their family life. So, now that you know it isn't unthinkable to achieve work-life balance, how about making it happen for yourself?
With a plethora of options, you may have a tough time deciding which career would be most suitable for you. Of course, no two women are the same and neither are their choices. But some careers provide women with the best opportunity to achieve both career success and work-life balance.
Here are the top eight career choices for women:
For women who want a chance to do what they really love doing, who have always dreamed of starting their own business, entrepreneurship could be the perfect career.
Wouldn't it be great to work from a place of your choice and at your own time? This would give you the flexibility to allocate time to your business and family as needed.
This is also one of the biggest challenges you will ever take up in your life as every decision will rest on your shoulders. Your employees would depend on you for their livelihood. Hence, this is also a great way to contribute to society.
Being an entrepreneur lets you be in charge because it is you who runs the show. Instead of putting in efforts to generate profits for other companies, why not channel those efforts towards creating greater profits for yourself?
With IT companies starting up and mushrooming rapidly, it's little wonder that this field has become so popular among women.
Young women can take up a career in the IT sector after earning a certificate or bachelor's degree in an applicable field, like computer science, informational technology, and cyber security. There are also many programs available to women of all ages who want to learn how to code—one of the most useful and in-demand skills in today's job market.
The ease and excitement of working on the internet, designing software and apps, implementing IT solutions for businesses, security, gaming, smartphones, etc. could be a huge draw. This is another field where you can make a difference as well as earn good money.
Whether you choose to be a pharmacist, a surgeon, or a nurse, a career in the medical field provides women with the ability to achieve career success and wealth. Plus, there's good job security.
As a qualified professional, you will always be in high demand, and once you've gained significant work experience, there's going to be no looking back.
Teaching has always been considered one of the most women-friendly careers as it allows women to spend sufficient time with their families, de-stress, go on vacations, and balance home and work. It's also one of the most rewarding and important careers anyone can choose to pursue.
The best part of being in the teaching field is that recession or no recession, your skills will always be sought after.
5. Human Resources
This field is perfect for women who have a penchant for working in the corporate world and interacting with people to solve organizational issues.
The job involves shortlisting and interviewing candidates, hiring and training them, setting their pay, benefits, and perks, designing appraisal systems, formulating policies and leave structures, looking after employee welfare, and settling disputes.
Every large organization needs qualified and experienced HR personnel and they are paid quite well, too.
No one solves problems like a woman does.
Given the fact that most women are good observers, empathetic listeners, and great communicators (all soft skills employers want in employees), they're sure to excel as psychologists or therapists.
A career in this field allows you to help those struggling to overcome many different personal and family problems. With substantial work experience, you can stand to make a lot of money and even charge on an hourly basis.
7. Interior Design
You've probably put in a lot of thought and effort into designing your home and making it look stunning. From selecting the perfect hangers for the closet to picking out the most exquisite lampshade, you know what it takes to make a home beautiful.
Now, how about extending this talent a little further and helping others make their home look gorgeous, too? A career in interior design is a great option for women who are creative, organized, and detail-oriented—who don't want a boring office job.
As you develop your career as an interior designer, you also gain the flexibility to pick your clients and appointments and get paid immensely well.
For women who are creative, good at communication, and love research, media is the place to be.
All companies nowadays have (or should have) social media accounts that need managing, in addition to their primary marketing and PR departments, so this field is only growing.
Writing, advertising, public relations, journalism, photography—there are many choices available for women who want to pursue a career in media.
Women today can achieve it all, from financial independence to a family, and from a progressive career to a great personal and social life. And, why not? Your decisions have the potential to give you all that you desire.
So, make sure you decide well!
If you're a woman struggling to find the right career for you, we can help.
We'd love it if you joined our FREE community. It’s a private, online platform where workers, just like you, are coming together to learn and grow into powerful Workplace Renegades.
It's time to find work that makes you feel happy, satisfied, and fulfilled. Join our FREE community today to finally become an empowered business-of-one!
This article was originally published at an earlier date.
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