Within 30 seconds recruiters have formed an impression based 55% on what they see, 38% on how you speak and 7% on what you say. First impressions count!
Grab recruiters’ attention by using colour to your advantage. Business Insider.com writer Vivian Giang uncovered these invaluable insights into the power colour can play in your next job interview:
Black – The leadership colour
It can be reserved and severe but, complemented with a sharp tie, scarf and shirt, you are creating a winning combination that communicates “glamour, sophistication, exclusivity”. Wearing black tells your audience you are confident, self-assured and ready to take on any leadership challenge.
Blue – Let’s work together
Blue is the team player colour. “Studies show that navy blue is the best color for a suit to wear to a job interview, because it inspires confidence. You are more likely to get the job when you wear navy blue to an interview than any other color’’ says Lisa Johnson Mandell of AOL Jobs.
Grey – I can take on any analytical problem
Pursuing an analyst role? Consider grey as it conveys that you work dedicatedly and independently to get the job done. But as grey can appear understated, ensure you verbally communicate your confidence in your ability to take on the job and be successful.
White – It’s all in the details
Recruiters and hiring managers may think you are a bit bland and lacking self-confidence, but on the other hand, white and beige tones convey you are organized and detail-oriented. Mandel from AOL Jobs suggests wearing white or beige to differentiate yourself in work environments where everyone else is wearing bright, loud colours.
Brown – You can count on me
Personally, I have seen too many 50+ candidates washed out and blending into the background when wearing brown. But this colour can carry a strong message of being approachable, reliable and dependable. Depending on the corporate culture (i.e. an environment that values safety and reliability, e.g. UPS), brown can make you stand out as a candidate of choice.
Red – Put me in charge
Applying to a spirited company, or for a role that demands you take charge? Then red is your colour! It tells the recruiter you have the power, charisma and persuasive prowess to lead any charge, and get the job done with passion and energy. But caution: if you are applying to a team-based role, or a role demanding collaboration and consensus building, red says you’d rather be in charge and run the game.
Green, Yellow, Orange and Purple – A creative mind at work
Consider using these colours for creative work cultures and jobs requiring out of the box thinking. These colours project fun and excitement, but heads-up, they don’t speak to being dependable and trustworthy.
Tips for 50+ job seekers
Marva Goldsmith, author of Re-Branding Yourself After Age 50, recommends you avoid colours that make your face look ghastly and white. White shirts can make you look old and drawn out. Punch up your look with a lavender or blue shirt to add vitality to your face, particularly if you are a 50+ job seeker with grey/silver hair. Purple in general creates the illusion of power, elegance and confidence, whereas pink conveys confidence for men and approachability for women. Browns should be worn with caution particularly for the 50+ job seeker as they can make you look dated and older. A crisp black or dark blue suit always makes a great first impression.
Think about what you typically wear to an interview
Do you project energy and vitality? Are your clothes contemporary and stylish, or are you pulling out a suit from the 90s – dated, old and projecting you aren’t edgy, adaptable and keen to take on new challenges. Create a fresh, up-to-date image that projects your confidence and competence to take on the challenges of this job market. Use colour to create a compelling reason to hire you!
Author: Joanne Loberg of JL Careers Inc. is a Certified Executive Coach and Internationally Certified Career Management Professional. She specializes in coaching professional and executive clients, and providing career advancement strategies.. Copyright JL Careers Inc. All rights reserved.
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