Your first impression to your future employer matters a lot. In a tropical country like Malaysia, it is important to dress appropriately for the hot and humid weather so that you don’t show up in your job interview as if you just finished running a marathon. However, it can be quite tricky to dress cool and conservatively (as per Malaysian’s culture) at the same time. Here are some tips on what to wear for a job interview in Malaysia.
Find out if the company is casual or formal
With the growth of startups and more younger companies that no longer have strict dress code for the employees, there is a blurred line on the “right” thing to wear for a job interview these days. One way to find out what to wear is to understand the office culture through social media like Instagram or Facebook. In photos where they share glimpses about the life in the office or of its employees, you should be able to get an idea of how casual or formal the company is. However, if you cannot get much information about the company, just dress professional and conservative. Being overdressed is always better than being underdressed.
When it doubt, always dress professional
Stay cool before and during the interview
Now, when I say cool, it does not mean being cool like the cool kid in school who has not much to say. What I meant is, prepare an outfit that will make you feel airy and fresh all day. Be sure to buy clothes that are made out of breathable material like cotton or linen. This will ensure that you don’t get sweat stains even from the short walk from the LRT station to the interview location.
What to Wear for a Job Interview in Malaysia for Women
For the ladies, it is important to dress modestly. To be on the safe side, it is always good to keep in mind the conservative culture in Malaysia when you are putting your outfit together.
- Do not wear too exposing clothes
- If you are wearing a skirt, it is safer to wear one that is knee length or below
- Do not wear thick make up as if you’re going to the night club
- Keep your hair neatly combed or tied up; if you wear a headscarf, make sure it is neatly tucked
- Traditional clothes like baju kurung and kurti acts as formal clothes too!
What to Wear for a Job Interview in Malaysia for Men
For the gentlemen, you want to look sharp and well put together. Since your range of choices are much lesser than women, you need to focus on looking clean and neat.
- Be sure your clothes are neatly pressed and ironed
- Don’t wear blazer or shirt that are loose and oversize
- Do not wear pants that show your underwear
- Make sure your hair and facial hair is nicely taken care of
- Leave the sneakers at home (unless you’re interviewing for a sports/activewear company)
Always carry a portfolio or briefcase
Never go into a job interview empty handed. You want to show your potential future employer that you are ready for the interview. Carry a portfolio with your resume or CV in it. If you have previous work sample or a portfolio for work, be sure to take it along as well. Show them that you take initiative and that you desire to work for the company.
Most importantly, do not wear your attitude on your face
How you present yourself matters a lot to your future employer, but at the end of the day, what comes down to getting the job is still your capability and how you perform during the interview. Be prepared for your interview and make sure you remain relaxed during the interview. Make good use of body language, prepare the answers to your questions, as well as questions to ask the interviewer. You want to leave an impression that you are a great team player who is eager to work with the company. Good luck!