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What to Wear to an Interview at a Start-up Company

Posted on the 08 September 2011 by Classycareergirl @classycareer

Hi Classy Career Girl, 

I am going through a round of interviews at a few start-ups in the Bay Area, most with a business casual to California casual dress code. I am from the East Coast, so I always wear a suit to interviews, but I feel like wearing a suit could do more harm than good in these situations. Any advice about what to wear that would not offend those who come to work in jeans and flip flops? 

Cheers, What To Wear

Congrats on the interviews!  I asked one of my friends from my MBA program who works at a startup in San Diego to help us out.  Here is her advice:

“Of course you always want to look professional even if you will not be working in a place where professional attire is common.  Looking smart at an interview, even in a startup environment, tells the interviewer that you are serious about a great first impression and landing the job. She should wear what she feels comfortable in to project confidence at her interview.  I think a suit would be fine if shoes are practical. A suit says, “I am professional” but high heels in a start up environment may send the wrong signal since a startup environment requires practicality, flexibility and includes a lot of running around. That said, I have never even owned a suit and I would not feel comfortable in a suit.”

Hope this helps!  Good luck on the interview!!  Readers- What do you think?  What should she wear?

(photo credit: 123RF)

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