Skirt or Dress, Jacket–I Dress Nicely

Cheryl BeckerThis interview is with Cheryl Becker, who is a retired/free-lance library consultant.  Ms. Becker is proud to be able to advise and assist others in the profession, from her work consulting and presenting workshops (sample list here: ) to advising individual job-seekers with things like resume revision and interview tips. She has been a hiring manager and a member of a hiring or search committee, primarily in public libraries in an urban area of the Midwestern US.

What Candidates Should Wear

Should the candidate wear a suit to the interview?

√ Yes, absolutely! It shows respect and professionalism

An outfit with a coordinated blazer and trousers:

√ Counts as a suit

Bare arms are inappropriate in an interview, even in the summer.

√ True

If a woman wears a skirt to an interview, should she also wear pantyhose?

√ Either pantyhose or tights. Bare legs are inappropriate

Women should wear make-up to an interview:

√ Always

Do you expect different levels of formality of dress, depending on the position you’re hiring for?

√ No

Which jewelry may candidates wear: (Please select all that are acceptable)

√ Single, simple necklace, bracelet, and/or ring

√ A few simple necklaces, bracelets, and/or rings

√ Earrings

Which hair colors are acceptable for candidates:

√ Natural colors (black, brown, red, blonde, gray)

The way a candidate dresses should:

√ Be fairly neutral

What This Library Wears

How do you dress when you are going to conduct an interview?

Skirt or dress, jacket–I dress nicely.

On a scale of one (too dressed up for my workplace) to five (too casual), khakis and a polo shirt are:


What’s the dress code at your library/organization?

√ Other: I am retired so n/a

Are there any specific items of clothing, etc. that are forbidden by your dress code? Please check all that apply

√ Other: see above

Librarians at your organization wear: Please check all that apply:

√ Other: none of the above

This survey was co-authored by Jill of Librarian Hire Fashion – submit your interview outfit to her blog!



Filed under Midwestern US, Public, Urban area, What Should Candidates Wear?

3 responses to “Skirt or Dress, Jacket–I Dress Nicely

  1. I don’t own any skirts…how about a fashion comment for those of us who are chromosomally challenged?


    • I know the survey is female-oriented and am not adverse to doing something like a one-off post with additional questions- but what are they? Other than “should I wear a necktie?”, what non-woman questions would you ask?


    • I have many questions about how men think about clothing or what perceptions they think they give when wearing certain outfits. If you’re interested in how you dress affects what people think of you, maybe you could ask some questions here or make comments based on your observation and experience? It might get some discussion going. I’m not a man and don’t know any man that well, so I don’t feel qualified to ask pertinent male-clothing questions.


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