Interview Insult or not?

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sam100 | 15:16 Mon 30th Nov 2009 | Jobs & Education
18 Answers
If in an interview you were told that your clothing was not considered good enough for the companies clients would you take the job?

The background info is that the interviewee was wearing smart clothing from Next and dressed appropriatley for the occasion. The reasoning behind the comment was that some of the clients wear designer clothes and that they would be put off if the companies rep was not dressed similarly.

I should point out that the salary for this job is 15k

Opinions greatly appreciated.


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That's less than my pension!!!
I would consider it if there was a clothing allowance on top of the salary......
How on earth do they expect you to have designer clothes on a salary of just 15K?

and no, I wouldn't take the job- i'd tell them point blank to their faces they can stick their job along with their snobby attitude where the sun doesn't shine- i'd rather be jobless.
so you dressed inapropriately but they still offered you the job ?
I agree with craft ! £15,000 is less than £300 pw. You would need clothing allowance on top of Salary to make it anywhere near worthwhile otherwise forget it !!
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Question Author
Its a PR job. They are also offering less than I have earnt in the past with the carrot on a stick being that i can progress in the company.

They also told me i was too talkative and too open. I did feel a bit bruised post interview! They have offered me the job this morning which to be honest i was expecting.

My initial thought was to tell turn it down on the above basis but i have had people telling me not to be fussy as jobs are so scarce at the moment.
how can you be too talkative in pr ?
Yes jobs are scarce, but honestly, can you see yourself happy in a company where the pay's crap, they dont like your talkative manner and they dislike the way you dress??

Again, I'd rather be jobless.
If you think you can manage on that Salary take the Job, and keep your eye out for a better one.....
Did they actually comment on the clothes you were wearing at the interview? If they did I find that quite disgraceful and totally in appropriate.
I am sure with your experience you were dressed in a manner fitting to an interview , where your outfit came from is totally irrelevent in my view.
If I were in your position now with an offer of a job on the table as it were , I would take it . I would wear the best clothes I could reasonably afford , smart serviceable and appropriate to the job and then I would make damn sure that I was the best rep they had ever had by being excellent at my job.
Would suggest that you aim for 2/3 good quality outfits eventually, which you can dress up as you wish and accessorise(sp)and even interchange In the job you will be able to network and make many contacts, at the same time keep your eyes peeled for a better position wnen you have established yourself , and it will happen.
Don't worry a scrap about designer stuff , people who focus on things like that totally ,are only deceiving themselves that they look good ,when in fact they are being sucked in to one of the biggest commercial rip offs of all time.The verybest of luck , please if you can let us know how you get on Go for it..
How on earth did they know your clothes weren't designer? Did they ask where you had purchased them or ask to examine the labels?
Say it is designer - Primarni.......
If i were being grilled about my clothes for £15K I would ask for my CV back and pretend to write on it and ask if there was one or two Ls in boll0x
Got to say i'm aghast at some of the answers!

No amount of job is worth being belittled like that in the interview stage, especially by some clothes snob, and for a piddling 15K a year? You have to be kidding me- right?
Question Author
Yes Brenda they did comment on the clothes I was wearing and I got The Devils Wears Prada 'look' . Was shocked as the woman who made the statement was about my age and not exactly well dressed herself.

I have asked for clarification on a few points raised and have asked for clarification of the companies dress code. if it comes back with waffle about "hand stiched Italian shoes" then I shall be sure to tell them to stick it. If it comes back with the usual reply then they cannot argue it.

I was just really thrown as nobody has ever crtisced the way I dress and I certainly didnt look scruffy. The job should be based on my abilities. I would have thought it was almost discrimination....
I wish I could afford to buy all my clothes from Next. It's good stuff.
I don't know you, Sam, but I get the impression that you dress reasonable smartly for work in a style that's within your budget. I suspect if you accept this job that you will made to feel pretty uncomfortable if you don't conform to their capitalist, designer-driven values. Ask yourself, a) is that really you?, and b) could you really afford to dress yourself in such a way on the paltry salary they'll be paying you (I get paid more than that, and I go the office in my jeans).

If you do turn the job down (and that would be my instinct), then be honest but tactful whilst retaining your dignity. Tell them you would be unable to work for them as their designer-driven culture is in direct conflict with your personal economic and ethical strategy. After all, what sensible person wastes money and resources on overpriced designer fashion made with exploited labour in this day and age?

Oh, and don't forget to be patronising - say that you wish them the very best of luck in their search for a suitably shallow-minded employee.
Actually I think you are in quite a strong position here. They appear to have been quite disgracefully rude to you, critising both your personality and your dress but you must have made quite an impression on them to offer you the job!
The ball is in your court, you can turn the job down detailing strongly that you were very unimpresesd with their lack of interview skills, stating you have had plenty of experience with other profressional organisations that have never behaved in this manner etc etc....or you can start to bargain hard for a clothing allowance as befits their style of organisation and any other points of negotation you may wish to throw in.
If they refuse to negotiate, you have lost nothing and probably have had a lucky escape, if they seem to be agreeable to negotation, ensure that you get it all in writing so they cannot go back on their word.
Best of luck

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