Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

December 12 2013

Best Colors to Wear in Your Next Interview

By David McMillin



I should start this with a disclaimer: I have no sense of style. It’s why you haven’t read any recommendations on what to wear or how to do your hair when you’re trying to look professional. I have a beard and a closet full of standard blue Oxford shirts.

Lucky for you (and me), CareerBuilder recently surveyed more than 2,000 hiring managers around the country to get a sense of how interview candidates can create a strong first impression before a word ever comes of their mouths. Here’s a look at how survey respondents associate colors with employee attributes.

  • Black - Leadership
  • Blue - Team Player
  • Gray - Logical/Analytical
  • White - Organized
  • Brown - Dependable
  • Red - Power
  • Green, Yellow, Orange and Purple - Creative

SEE ALSO: 7 Factors That Will Impact Your Next Interview

While being analytical and organized are both important, hiring managers appear to be looking for interviewees who dress like they want to be leaders or team players. Respondents recommended blue and black as the two best colors to wear to an interview. Those colors must be tailored, though.

“Clothing that is too loose can make you look like a kid wearing your dad’s suit,” CareerBuilder advises.

It seems that many of the respondents aren’t big fans of creative applicants. 25 percent of them indicated that orange is the worst color to wear and conveys a sense of unprofessionalism. Note to self: throw away all those pairs of baggy orange pants.

What do you typically wear to interviews? If you have any simple suggestions for your colleagues in the industry, please share them in the comments section below. 

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