Media Interview Attire

How to Dress for a Media Interview

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The old cliché, about not getting a second chance to make a first impression, is especially true when it comes to job interviews. And what you wear on an interview, your media interview attire, will shape the very first impression you make on a potential employer.

Do I Need to Wear a Suit?

The short answer is no. In media, unlike other fields such as finance, people tend to dress down. (In other words people who work in media don’t wear suits to work every day.) Although you can deviate from the suit, you still need to dress conservatively and professionally.

Women’s Interview Attire

Women, especially, have more freedom to veer away from a traditional suit. Skirt suits for women are a nice option, as are variations on the skirt suit. A nice pencil skirt and blouse can work well without a jacket. Pants, paired with a blouse, can also work well, in lieu of a traditional pantsuit. Dresses, if they’re professional-looking, can also work well. All outfits should be paired with a clean shoe. A nice pump often works best; any shoe or boot with a large, clunky heel should be avoided.

Men’s Interview Attire

For media interviews men don’t need to go with traditional black, gray or pinstripe suits. Trouser and jacket combinations can work well and, depending on how casual the office environment is, a tie can be optional.

What to Keep in Mind

More than anything else you want to look professional and presentable. You don’t want to look sloppy. (And, trust me, people can look sloppy in a suit.)

Visible tattoos should be covered, earrings that aren't in your ears should be removed and your hair should be neat. (Women may want to think about pinning back long hair.) You should also make sure you have an appropriate bag for the interview.

?The bag should match your outfit -- leather is almost always preferable to canvas -– and should easily hold everything you might need, such as your resume and clips.

Ultimately think about clean lines. If you look sharp you’ll give off an air of confidence, which is key. You want to look like someone who’s responsible and who has her act together, and looking disheveled gives the opposite impression.

Do Your Research

Your interview attire should match the corporate culture of the company you’re interviewing at. This means you should research the company’s corporate culture. While you might not have even been to the company before, you can glean a lot from the company website. Also ask yourself some basic questions about what the company does, where it is, whether it’s corporate or not. After all, a small design firm in Soho is certainly going to have a different feel than the division of major media conglomerate.

Get a Second Opinion

It always helps to show friends and family some of the outfits you’re wearing on your interviews; this way if anything looks off, they can help you spot it.

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