General Question

RandomMrdan's avatar

Given this particular interview scenario, please advise me on what I should wear on each day (see details).

Asked by RandomMrdan (7382 points ) November 10th, 2013

I have an interview for a position within a company I already work for. There are many applicants, and the company is taking us out for dinner and drinks Wednesday evening. The dress code has been determined to be Business Professional that evening.

Thursday is an all day event at the corporate offices, and it’ll be at that time that all the applicants will have a chance to sit down and have one-on-one interviews with company executives. This day has been determined to be Business Casual. The events each day are on an itinerary and have specific times.

I recently purchased a new suit and plan to wear it Wednesday evening with a new shirt and tie combination, I assume that would fulfill the business professional requirement…. But it now becomes confusing since I’m use to wearing a suit and tie for an interview. They said Business Casual… should I just wear the suit without a tie? I’m at somewhat of a loss on this issue and don’t want to be the only one who shows up not dressed properly.

What do I wear Thursday? Also, Thursday evening after all the interviews are done, the company is taking everyone out to Dave and Busters for free games/drinks. It’s been determined that Dave and Busters will be casual. I planned on wearing jeans and a nice shirt for the casual part.

Help shed some light on Business Professional vs. Business Casual under the specific circumstances I find myself in.

Thanks!

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10 Answers

Gabby101's avatar

I used to work for a large company in the San Francisco bay area and Business Professional would have been a suit and tie, but Business Casual would have been a more casual button-down with slacks/khakis. If you are on a budget, you could just wear the shirt and pants from the suit, without the tie and jacket. If it’s the fashion industry or some other industry where people are really into looks, I might not do that, but for most industries, it will be fine.

Biz Casual This shirt with jeans, would be perfect for Dave & Busters as well.

Biz Professional

Seek's avatar

Your location would be helpful.

What is considered a pretty formal “Business casual” here in sunny Florida would get you kicked out of some office buildings in New York City.

ETpro's avatar

Here are some images that should give you an idea how to dress.

RandomMrdan's avatar

I live in Columbus Ohio. I work in sales and wear a shirt and tie daily to work.

Seek's avatar

In that case, on casual day you should wear full suit, no tie, and your shirt can have a small pattern. Pro day, full suit, modest tie, solid coloured shirt.

That’s playing to the conservative side. In my city, business casual is a polo and khakis.

RandomMrdan's avatar

That’s what I was sort of thinking as well. I was thinking suit and dress shirt, but without the tie on the business casual day too. What was confusing though, is it’s an interview, and I’m use to wearing a tie =/

Smitha's avatar

For business dinners you can opt to dress conservatively. You can choose a suit with a silk tie in a coordinating color. Choose a light-colored shirt. Your belt and shoes should match. Wear leather oxfords or loafers, recommends the Dress Code Guide website. Just wear a tasteful watch and a wedding or class ring.
For business casual you can wear a polo shirt or collared shirt. Khaki or dress pants along with dress shoes would be a perfect choice. Don’t wear a tie.

BosM's avatar

Take a deep breath, you must meet the qualifications for the job so relax about the attire. This interview sounds very much like the one targeting your “fit” into the group.

The suit event is to see how you stack up for Business meetings with clients. I suggest you play the “drinks” part of the experience very conservatively, honestly be careful there. Alcohol will dilute your sharpness.

As for the Business Casual dilemma – there’s an old expression – “when in Rome, do what the Roman’s do.” This part of the interview could be to see how you fit into their office culture. If they wear sports coats and slacks then you should. The suit without a tie is acceptable, but your knowledge of the company should give you insight here.

After work – this is to see if you can have fun with coworkers and if you are someone they can see hanging out with and what you are describing to wear makes sense. Be careful of the amount of alcohol consumption. Good luck.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

I personally would wear a suit sans tie for business casual. A lighter color suit will be less formal.

You’ll look one increment smarter than the khaki and sportcoat option without overdoing it. Reel in the formality some with your shoe’s color, light brown if the suit choice allows (it should). Dressier shoe styles are being worn casually these days, take advantage.

Use a tasteful pocket square for color if you wear a white shirt. Fold it using the puff method as it’s the most casual and is never dated. Don’t allow too much to show.

Wear an appropriate (dress) watch even if you don’t usually, you’re punctual remember?

Proper fit is important above all. It allows the clothes to do the work so you can relax.

Drinks at this sort of company function is still work, restrain yourself accordingly.

Italianaa's avatar

I think a business suit with tie is your option. Once you get to the dinner/social poart of the day, I would look around and take note to what everyone else is wearing. Always put your best foot forward, with that said make sure your shoes are polished and in good condition. I don’t recommend wearing jeans and a shirt.
Business casual is a slacks, button down shirt, no tie and a suit/dinner jacket; professional is a suit with a tie
And please, please make sure you wear a belt – so many men walk around my office building without a belt on and honestly it looks sloppy.
Just my opinion
Good luck!

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