As you sort through entry level jobs and paid internships in your post-grad or summer opportunity search, you’ll no doubt discover the importance fashion plays in establishing a good reputation with employers. Whether it’s a job interview or first day or work, the clothes you wear signal to others the type of employee you will be – if you dress like you’re still in college, that’s how you’ll be viewed. Here are some tips for escaping “college student” fashion in the workplace.
Even if you’re wearing a suit that screams professionalism, this look can quickly be undercut by something as simple as a backpack. While this accessory was great for lugging books around in college, it’s a surefire way to remind coworkers of your inexperience as a recent college graduate. Instead, pick up a leather briefcase, messenger satchel or bag that’s better suited to office culture.
Making sure your clothes fit well is another important step in establishing your workplace reputation. If you show up on your first day in a suit that’s clearly too large or a skirt that’s too revealing, it shows that you don’t understand the importance of office attire – the mark of someone fresh out of college.
Finally, take the time to iron your clothes weekly so they look crisp and clean at work. Showing up every morning with wrinkles and creases in your newly-bought professional apparel is almost worse than donning a wrinkle-free T-shirt and jeans.