Don’t let the heat of summer wilt your chances of landing your next job – here are our tips for staying cool at hot summer interviews.
As workers embrace the new year and shake off the post holiday blues, some will be eyeing a fresh start in a new job.
This makes sense from a personal perspective – launching into a new year and wanting new challenges, work environments or a complete change of scenery can be a great way to renew your love of your profession and launch the next phase of your career.
And, from a practical perspective, it also makes sense because the job market heats up again fairly quickly into a new year given hiring and recruiting can ease off in the lead up to Christmas.
For most Australians, job searching during summer brings the additional challenge of navigating extreme heat where days can get as high as the early 40s…or, for those further north, a wet season where the humidity is like a wall of wet heat that is hard to live through, let alone be at your best for a job interview.
Don’t let this additional climactic challenge deter you from getting yourself out there into the job hunt – here are some tips for how best to manage those hot summer interviews.
1. Dress cool, literally!
“Looking cool” can be important, but what you actually choose to wear and particularly the fabric, will also make a massive difference.
First up, it goes without saying that most job interviews still require you to be corporate – the warm weather doesn’t offer the excuse to rock up in shorts and thongs…unless the interview is somewhere where that is appropriate.
The main thing to remember is to ensure your interview gear is made from some kind of breathable material. Avoid synthetics where possible – you’ll be warm enough with the nerves you’re potentially feeling pre and during the interview, so let’s not have you end up a big puddle of perspiration thanks to bad clothing choices.
Wearing lighter shades of clothes makes sense in terms of keeping you cooler when outdoors but these can also show perspiration more, so beware. And, it’s also possible the office you’ll be attending for the interview will be air conditioned and chilled, so having a light jacket or blazer to throw on can not only keep you comfortable but also hide those perspiration spots.
If you need to take a bag with you, a backpack is a bad choice because of the heat it will generate slung over your shoulder or on your back, so take something you can carry easily in one hand.
And shoe choice is critical – be comfortable but smart. If you need to wear trainers or sandals or even thongs to the interview because of how hot it is, do this and make a quick shoe change once there. This last point also applies to other parts of your hot summer interview wear, such as ties.
The same goes for stockings and excessive make-up, but you might also just want to avoid those altogether. They tend to increase your body temperature considerably and may not even be a mandatory part of your presentation for the job.
Pro Tip: Scope out where the job interview is and if there is any way you can travel in casual gear and change into something more formal once there.
2. Work out your transportation
Driving to the interview is ideal because it means you can keep yourself cool all the way there in the car. Plus it also gives you the chance to think about the interview and to prepare more.
If driving isn’t an option, using a ride service is worth the money – think of it as an investment in your future.
But, of course, some will use public transportation or want to cycle for a range of reasons, or even be close enough to walk, which is maybe where dressing casually and changing into your interview wear once there makes the most sense.
3. Stay hydrated
Seems obvious, but don’t underestimate how becoming dehydrated might derail your interview.
Water is critical, obviously, in so many ways, but in terms of a hot summer interview it helps regulate your body temperature, creates saliva (essential for talking comfortably) and balances your body’s chemicals as your brain needs it to create hormones and neurotransmitters.
So being hydrated effectively means you’ll perform better by being physically comfortable and more mentally able.
Carry a bottle of water with you to the interview, hydrating as needed, and even into the interview, although it’s also likely that water will be made available to you. And don’t be ashamed or feel it’s a bad look to drink water during the interview as needed.
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