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You are what you wear: how to dress for management board interviews

You are what you wear, and the clothes make the man, they say. Although you have obtained your management consulting interview based on your hard work and references, you can not deny the impact of visual impressions on the whole. Your appearance and your clothes will carry a serious message to your hiring committee. There are simple ways to guarantee your professional appearance. Just follow a few basic rules on what not to wear.

Human Resources Managers at McKinsey and BCG, among others, largely agree that simplicity is the key to choosing your interview wardrobe. You should avoid wearing something flashy or on the top. You want to look smart and concocted, which means you have to pay attention to details, such as pressing your suit the night before. You do not want to go to your management consulting interview with the atmosphere of putting your clothes together at the bottom of the laundry basket or in a suitcase. All this may seem fundamental to the etiquette of interviews, but according to current Booz employees, they have seen it all. Wrinkles, among other small visual details, can leave a lasting impression – and negative – in the mind of the hiring committee.

Men must be conservatively named in a tie suit. Tap your shirt and swipe your suit before the interview. A fold that results from sitting during the waiting period is correct, provided that the suit has been ironed by a professional before the interview.

Men's city shoes must be clean and dusted or polished. You do not want to arrive with mud on the bottom of your shoe. You will be sure to leave an unpleasant and lasting impression on the secretary who is obliged to clean up your mess.

Women should adhere to the same expectations of the wardrobe. Crumpled pantsuits or skirts and low waist blouses are terrible for a job interview. Women should stick to neutral colors and avoid too much jewelry. A simple navy blue or anthracite pantsuit with a white or cream blouse and a silver chain will bring a pleasant touch. Similarly, conservative shoes, comfortable but practical, are preferred.

For men and women, avoid getting too dressed for your management consulting interview. Underestimating and flying under the radar visually is preferable to undressing or wearing too little (dressing in a revealing way). Wearing a European-style suit with a vest and a tissue will appeal to fashionistas rather than the management consultant. Stick with muted colors, such as blue, brown, gray and white tones. Avoid bright, flashy colors, such as red, orange or green. It is important not to push the envelope when choosing your interview wardrobe. You want to make a lasting impression and stand out from the crowd, but achieving it with your clothes is not the way to go.

It is important to avoid strong scents of perfume or cologne during your interview with the management consultant. A Bain consultant told the story of a woman who had come forward for her counseling interview and felt as if she had just left the perfume factory. The members of the maintenance committee had to go outside to get fresh air once she left because of her persistent aroma. A light deodorant spray is needed, but exaggerating the scent is a misstep for an interview.

AT Kearney consultants recommend, as most management consulting teams do, that in order to be well dressed for your maintenance, it is essential to keep it simple and comfortable. You do not want to wear restrictive clothing that cuts off traffic in the middle of the meeting or does not stumble on your own because you have insisted on wearing high heels of an impractical height.

Dress for success and never do too much. The last thing you want to do during your management consulting interview is to worry about a malfunction of your wardrobe or whether your outfit costs you the job. By focusing less on the wardrobe and paying attention to your overall impression, you will be able to spend more time perfecting your interviewing skills and doing research on the business.

Choose the path of least resistance to choose your wardrobe. Think of an outfit and do not go away from the plan. It is better to be a little sober than on the top.

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