Crazy Like a Fox: A Guide to Dressing Up for Your Phone Interview

They can’t see you! So why should you dress up for a phone interview? The answer just might help get you a new job.

Image CreditCrazy Like a Fox: A Guide to Dressing Up for Your Phone Interview

You have to admit it. You were wrong. Sure, it sounded ridiculous at the time. But you wished you dressed up for your phone interview. The hoodie and shorts you wore just didn’t feel right. Most people say it doesn't matter. The interviewer can't see you! Now you know better.

So how should you dress for your next phone interview?

We're here to tell you the small but impactful reasons you should dress up for your phone interview. We'll also discuss how you should approach it and let you in on a few strategies that can give you an edge above your competition. 

Because when it comes to an interview for a job that you want, every advantage counts. You have to win between the margins.

Alright, let's get to it!

Make a Great First Impression from the Start

Show them you're worth the time of an in-person interview. Before you can get an invite for an in-person interview, you have to ace the phone interview. This is where dressing up for your phone interview helps.

Get in the Right Mindset - Yes, you'll be relaxed wearing sweatpants. But will you feel professional in sweatpants? Will your mind be prepared to answer tough questions? Will you take the phone interview seriously? You better take it seriously. Your interviewer certainly will.

You can be relaxed AND dressed like a professional for your phone interview.

Preparing to answer critical questions includes preparing your mind to answer those questions. If your mind is primed for work, it will be as sharp as the crisp button-up you decide to wear.

Better Posture and a Better Voice - It's hard to slouch when you wear your most elegant clothes. When you're dressed well, you sit up a little straighter. It's part pride, part you wanting to present your best self.

Your posture, pride and self-esteem improve your phone interview performance. Your voice becomes clearer. Your lungs expand and contract properly to support your thoughtful answers. The interview can better hear your responses instead of odd breathing noises.

Calm Your Nerves - Whether in person or on the phone, interviews stress out the best of us. Being in the right mindset, having confidence from wearing great clothes, and preparation can help calm your nerves. 

3 Rules When Dressing for Your Phone Interview

Don't Underplay It - It doesn't hurt to mention it again but don't act coy or aloof. If you want the job, act like it and dress like you want it.

Be Comfortable - Comfort and ease should be your target when choosing what to wear for a phone interview.

Aim for your level of comfort. Everyone's different. If you're comfortable in a full suit and grenadine tie, do it.

Don't Wear Anything New - As exciting as it is to get a new outfit for an interview, you want to be comfortable. You don't need anything riding up where it shouldn't while you answer questions. 

If you want some more ideas about what you should wear to your next job interview, check out our blog post: Outfit Ideas that Set You Apart for Your Next Job Interview.

A Few More Performance-Enhancing Strategies

Anything else? Of course! Here are a few more small things you can do to perform better for your phone interview.

Take a Cough Drop - Make sure your voice is silky smooth for your phone interview. Just remember to finish it before the call starts. 

Have a Glass of Water Nearby - Your throat will get dry when you talk. Avoid that terrible coughing sound by taking a few sips of water in between questions.

Have a Photo of the Person Interviewing You - Add some humanity to your phone interview. Looking at someone's face can help you focus. LinkedIn is a great place to find your interviewer's photo.

You're Ready. You Got This.

You have what you need to give you the edge over your competition. But remember it won't do you any good if you don't do your homework and research the company. 

Between your hard work, and paying attention to the details, you're gonna do great for the next interview.

For more style advice and inspiration, read the articles in our Journal.

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