How to Dress for the Job You Want

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Dressing for success is a time-worn piece of advice that still applies to today’s world. When you put effort into looking your best, it influences how people perceive you. The mindset of dressing well evaluates how we feel on the inside, and about the clothes we are wearing. Our style of dress says something about who we are and how we want to portray ourselves to the world.

Clothing and perception are linked. Each day that we see people, we evaluate them based on their appearance, and vice versa for us. Nowhere does this happen more than at our place of employment. At the job, you want to exude an air of confidence, professionalism, and a feeling of caring about your place of employment. Trying something different with how you dress can be helpful, rather than relying on your tired and tested prior purchases of clothing. Keep reading to learn about ways to dress for the job that you want.

Scope out the landscape.

Assess what the dress code is for the job which you are taking on. Is it strictly business, or business casual? This question arises at all jobs, including jobs that require logical thinking. Does the place allow for sweatpants or jeans? Or is it strictly suits and blazers? You have to get a lay of the land before you can determine what “dressing for success” means for a new location. You don’t want to go all Don Draper if the place is asking for little more than khakis and a polo shirt.


There are some places that allow for a variety of dress styles, which is also okay. If this is the situation, then your best bet is to try and find a middle road to follow. Your goal is to stand out for the work that you do and let your style of dress complement that. Give it a few weeks, scope out the landscape, then make the best bet as to how to dress for success at your new job.

Make an extra effort.

When trying to figure out the best wardrobe for a job, try to make an extra effort, even if only the minimum is asked for. Say, for instance, your job requires that you wear nothing more than jeans, a polo shirt, and a pair of sneakers. In the case of women, maybe the most that are being asked of you is jeans, a blouse, and a pair of sensible flats.

For some people, this is a dream situation, because they might feel that they don’t have to go all out with dressing up. When making an extra effort, see what U.S. department stores have on hand, or what Chico’s boutiques and Chico’s outlets have available for you to add to your wardrobe.

There are ways though that you can make an extra effort, though the minimum is all that’s being asked of you. Try to make your sneakers as stylish as possible then you have with prior purchases. If it’s winter, maybe add a trendy full price sweater from Chico’s with a pair of nice jeans, and you are officially dressing to impress. Making just a little extra effort with choosing different clothes for your everyday life can go a long way with dressing for success. By heading to one of the affordable Chico’s outlets, you’ll be getting great cash value and looking fabulous at the same time.

Ease into it.

No one at a job, with how they dress, goes from one of the cast members of The Big Bang Theory to James Bond, or from one of the cast members of Glow to Courtney Sarofim. Such a huge jump with style and quality of dress can be a bit abrasive, and people on the job will call you out for it. You want to seem genuine when making such a change. Remember, how you dress is how people first perceive you. Choose those select styles which can help you to make this transition.



If you come dressed completely differently than before, people can read certain things into that. They might see you as being after something, and you don’t want to give off that impression. Give a change like this gradual time, and maybe do some homework on your ever-growing wardrobe. You want to have something different than just going with your prior purchases.

See what Chico’s boutiques, other U.S. clothing stores, or outlets have that might help you to make this transition. Keep it slow and steady, and the change in appearance will appear a bit more natural with this next step.

Don’t brag about how good you look.

Kendrick Lamar said it best: “Be humble”. Humility can help you go a long way in life, and how you dress for the job you want is one example of that. When you change the way you dress on the job, you might feel a bit sure of yourself. That dress and heels? Killing the game. The solid black tie, and crisp white shirt? Fabulous.

Be happy with how you look. Enjoy the confidence which this brings to your performance on the job. What you don’t do is head over to the nearest cubicle or desk of a co-worker, and say “I’m looking pretty good today. Right?” No one wants to hear that. The best way to handle this is to let your co-workers be the ones to remark on your new appearance.

This shows a bit of humility and, frankly, keeps you from getting on everyone else’s nerves. Hopefully word about how this change with dress will circulate around to your boss, and they might begin to wonder what all the fuss is about. Being humble about dressing for success can help you out in the long run, and makes you look like a pro.

Treat yourself.

Now’s not the time to be excessively cheap. Don’t just buy off the clearance rack. You want to guarantee that you are putting your best foot forward when it comes to choosing a new wardrobe for the job. Go outside of your comfort zone and don’t just rely on prior purchases. Don’t second guess your new clothing choices, and make them final sale pieces of clothing. Be a pro when it comes to building your new wardrobe. Go to some local clothing outlets. Try shopping for select styles at Chico’s boutiques. Try buying something that’s full price rather than on sale. Pushing yourself to try something different can help you in the long run.

Spending a little extra at full price on pieces of clothing can provide your wardrobe with pieces of clothing that will impress for years to come. Try a new overcoat from a small boutique. Purchase a nice set of wingtip shoes. Check out a perfectly tailored suit. Don’t break the bank, but find those full-price newfound pieces of clothing which can impress at your workplace. You’ll be happy with your final purchase rather than just relying on prior purchases.

Chose a non-distracting solid color.

For example, when going to an interview for a computer programmer position, you want the focus to be on you, the potential employee, the logical thinker whose capable of logical reasoning. You don’t want the hiring manager’s eyes to keep going to the busy pattern or loud color which is on your shirt. When buying a particular dress style for a job interview, and for the job itself, try to find clothes with a solid color.

Go with a color that isn’t too overpowering, demanding, or distracting. Try to stick with standard business colors, and add accents that come in brighter hues. Maybe think about adding a red handkerchief to a navy blue suit jacket, or a scarf that you found on the rack to your hair.


Black as a solid color is a good choice, because it shows authority, and makes you look like a pro. The color also suggesting that you are purposeful. Dark blue can show you as being calm, controlled, trustworthy, and secure. All of these are personality traits which hiring managers look for during interviews with potential employees.

You don’t want to dress like the vice president or a mortician, but subdued colors can help you with getting the job you want. When you do this, you present yourself as a logical thinker, someone who can solve complex problems. Make sure your next piece of merchandise that you buy off the rack from a small boutique is a solid color.

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