I was just commiserating with colleagues about the job search, when I was reminded of an email we received about a year ago from our ever helpful career services department. I've cut and pasted the most of it (with some emphasis added)
The Placement Office tries to speak with every employer that comes on campus. We try to get their feedback on our students. Here is what we have been hearing so far.....
1. Ladies wearing skirts should always wear pantyhose to an interview.
2. Ladies should always wear closed-toe and closed-heeled shoes to an interview.
3. Gentlemen should always wear a WHITE shirt to an interview.
4. Gentlemen should make sure their haircut is neat and conservative. (Shave unruly neck hairs.)
5. Everyone should have clean manicured nails.
6. Good dental hygiene is extremely important. Eat a breath mint before you go in to interview. Now is the time to schedule your 6-month visit to the dentist.
7. Ladies should not show décolletage.
8. Make sure your shirts are tucked in.
9. Confidence in an interview is great but remember these interviewers are not your buddies and they should be treated with a certain level of formality.
10. Any documents you give to employers should have your name on them and be stapled/paper clipped if more than one page. (i.e. writing samples)
11. Product....make sure your hair has some. Tame it if it is big and wild.
12. Minimal jewelry. One ring per hand. If you wear a watch, do not wear a bracelet. Ladies wear small earrings. No earrings for men.
13. RESEARCH YOUR EMPLOYERS!! Read the firm`s website. Google the firm. Learn about the practice areas and read the press releases the firm issues. Try to read the bios of the interviewers. Remember, sometimes the firms change interviewers on us so be flexible.
We want you to do well. Overall, the response we are getting from employers is extremely positive! We expect many of you will receive call back interviews.
. . .
Seriously, people - brush your teeth before you go in for an interview... and run a brush through that hair too. In fact, you could even start doing that on a daily basis. Just a suggestion. I really wonder, though - this was feedback from employers? Someone was so bad, that an interviewer had to contact our office and suggest that students brush their teeth? I cringe to think what my degree represents to outsiders.