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#1 Cufflinks?
01/11/2008 18:31


do you have to wear a shirt with cufflinks on your interviews? does it matter if you don't? if you had two equally good candidates, and one was better dressed, would you give him the job? does it matter if you're overweight? do they judge you on that?? argh!

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#2 RE: Cufflinks?
01/11/2008 19:48

eurocons to nervous (#1)

you're kidding, right?

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#3 RE: Cufflinks?
01/11/2008 21:57

rufus doors to eurocons (#2)

You should change your name from nervous to neurotic

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#4 RE: Cufflinks?
01/11/2008 23:25

Anon (interviewer) to nervous (#1)

Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes - and a few other things.

Sorry if that came as a surprise, but that's life!

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#5 RE: Cufflinks?
02/11/2008 00:03

ZB to nervous (#1)

No, if the interviewer's looking at yourcuffs they're either so inept that getting through the interview is a complete gamble, or you're boring them so much their mind's drifting

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#6 RE: Cufflinks?
02/11/2008 04:41

SamMan to nervous (#1)

Oh yeah, and don't forget to wear you fedora!

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#7 RE: Cufflinks?
04/11/2008 06:49

Ask to SamMan (#6)

Ok initially I thought the post had no substance too but actually there is somethign to it so here's a serious answer.

The answer is yes to all that, but it sums up to making a good impression. People, whether they admit it or not, do make judgments about your based on your looks. Looking smart, professional and healthy will purport the view that you are a good strong candidate.

Looking scruffy in anyway wont.

You can however be overweight and yet look smart and healthy.

Being ugly however is a different matter. Better looking people tend to be in better jobs (some research I read somewhere). I guess its because good looks are associated with "looking healthy".

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#8 RE: Cufflinks?
04/11/2008 09:11

mac to Ask (#7)

I think that the question they will ask themselves is whether, if they put you in front of a client, you will harm the brand of the firm.

Most consultancies pride themselves on professionalism and appearances and, in many cases, are more concerned with style over substance.

Good luck

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#9 RE: Cufflinks?
04/11/2008 09:28

link to nervous (#1)

I wouldn't wear cufflinks on an interview. The reason is: some might like it, some might dislike it, but regular button cuffs are simply neutral.

btw: recruiting in management consulting doesn't work this way – there are no "two equally good candidates" for one single job, there are only suitable candidates and not suitable candidates and you will try to hire all the suitable ones.

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#10 RE: Cufflinks?
04/11/2008 09:35

aston to link (#9)

consultancies that have grown out f audit roots have quite traditional views on what constitutes professional dress - for these, do wear cufflinks (buttons are seen as cheap), don't wear brown, squashy or ultra-pointy shoes, don't have a breast pocket on your shirt. For those firms that have grown from a software heritage, looser standards apply...

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#11 RE: Cufflinks?
04/11/2008 09:46

bob to aston (#10)

I think a lot of this is fairly subjective to be honest, and I can't see any of it genuinely affecting whether they give you an offer or not - other than looking scruffy.

They're not going to reject on the basis that, as you're wearing a button shirt, you're scruffy or not smart enough, therefore wouldn't fit into the company culture. Not even subconsciously - yes, first impressions count, but each MC spends about 5-6hr at least assessing every candidate through tests, interviews and case studies!

and about not wearing black suits - which some people have been mentioning previously - I went to a MC event the other day where a partner was wearing a black suit. Again, it won't really make a difference either way. As long as it's not brown, I'd say, and so doesn't especially stand out, they're not going to care. Again - first impressions count, but, at an interview, even a first round one, they spend as much as 2 hours interviewing and discussing your suitability. You can certainly guarantee that no-one's going to write in their notes:

"excellent quantative analysis, sure grasp of what work we do, strong motivation for joining..,.black suit, no cufflinks, shirt pocket. REJECT"

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#12 RE: Cufflinks?
04/11/2008 10:03

Bainee to bob (#11)

I think it would be extremely hard to find two nearly identical applicants (CV, cover letter, case study performance, etc).

As an interviewer, if two applicants were close enough and neither looked scruffy then I would choose based on personality rather than cufflinks or weight or god knows what else.

I believe all firms hire people that 'fit' in their culture and at least at Bain this includes people that do not frequently wear cufflinks.

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#13 RE: Cufflinks?
04/11/2008 12:58

mgm to Bainee (#12)

but at what cost? many of those zany Bainies with their unfettered flapping cuffs have lost an arm as a result when they get dragged into the laser printer trying to change a cartridge...

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#14 RE: Cufflinks?
05/11/2008 19:24

trinny to mgm (#13)

I have been involved recruitment for a lengthy period at a large consulting firm - first impressions are really important and when there's a borderline decision, suit, clothes, jewellery can be taken into account, because it's really important to feel confident that a candidate will be "safe in traffic" in front of a client.

I've seen debates about whether a guy would be safe because he wore a lot of jewellery and a flashy suit and tie, and the same for a girl who rocked up wearing multi colour tights and a mini skirt..they both got the job but clothing was debated.

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#15 RE: Cufflinks?
05/11/2008 19:32

ZB to trinny (#14)

I'd say those were extremes - of both clothing style and decision-making situations.

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#16 RE: Cufflinks?
05/11/2008 23:56

Jeeves to ZB (#15)

If you had any refinement, you would know cufflinks are for dress. To where cufflinks to work is vulgar

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#17 RE: Cufflinks?
06/11/2008 06:57

Pedant to Jeeves (#16)


If you had any refinement, you would know the difference between 'where' and 'wear'.

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#18 RE: Cufflinks?
06/11/2008 18:42

pirlo to Pedant (#17)

A true story. i moved from consulting to PE. i got the job, they took me to lunch and they told me to shave my beard ( i had a goatee at the time). i was clean cut, well shaven, nicley trimmed beared. they didnt care, cause it wasnt old school and thats that.

sometimes appearances count more than you think. if i sit in a meeting with an investor, and he has a stain on his shirt, it says volumes about him, and i will draw conclusions to his work - regardless if this is a correct correlation or not, you still do.

the classic example of a ferrari. immagine if you spent 10000000k buying a ferrari. you sit in it the first day, but the logo in the car was misspelled - ferrary. now, even if it was such a little oversight, you will instantly draw conclusions on the ability of the engine, even if the mistake was compeltely non-related.

if your fat, dress well. if your in finance, only cufflinks (even the rope ones). clean cut, well shaven, confident.

people ALWAYS judge the cover before reading the book

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#19 RE: Cufflinks?
06/11/2008 22:31

HT to pirlo (#18)

"cause it wasnt old school and thats that"... "10000000k buying a ferrari"...

"the logo in the car was misspelled - ferrary"...

"even the rope ones"

And it's all these little signs which tell everybody reading that you haven't got a clue what you're talking about.

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#20 RE: Cufflinks?
06/11/2008 22:40

Your Mum to pirlo (#18)

The only PE you're involved in is the one on Thursday afternoons. Now go do your spelling practice and off to bed.

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#21 RE: Cufflinks?
10/11/2008 16:11

MBB to Your Mum (#20)

I seriously believe that cufflinks are such a British/London thing. Most Americans, of which there are many working in London in consulting firms, do not wear cufflinks...At the end what counts is that you are good at your job and bring the money home. It is the same with interviews. If you ace your interviews you will get in. A lot of people do well but very few people completely ace the interviews. My suggestions would be to work on that rather than worry about cufflinks...

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#22 RE: Cufflinks?
11/11/2008 23:53

Anon to Your Mum (#20)

that's hilarious

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#23 RE: Cufflinks?
12/11/2008 09:16

Cynic to Anon (#22)

The best consultants I ever worked with wore metallica t-shirts and drank mountain dew at their desk. Nice friendly bunch, and they knew their stuff too.

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#24 RE: Cufflinks?
31/07/2009 14:43

Nick Sarkozy to Cynic (#23)

And as for shirt pockets - only British shirts are pocket-less, and it's a recent trend.

Buy a shirt in Europe and you still get a free pocket included in the price, no cost-cutting over there

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#25 RE: Cufflinks?
31/07/2009 15:25

Mars A Day to Nick Sarkozy (#24)

I find the pocket useful for holding my cufflinks as I roll up my sleeves to batter some underperforming subordinate who wore brown pointy shoes to the office.

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#26 RE: Cufflinks?
31/07/2009 15:54

Mr Cool to Mars A Day (#25)

I LOVE this forum!!!

A post a few weeks ago from a guy who's wife had walked out on him drew half a dozen acerbic and withering responses in a week.

A post on cufflinks get 25 posts in an hour.


BTW - very simple rule - dress like your CLIENTS CEO and you can't go wrong.

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#27 RE: Cufflinks?
31/07/2009 16:06

Mars A Day to Mr Cool (#26)

Mr Cool this was a resurrected thread from last year.

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#28 RE: Cufflinks?
31/07/2009 16:29

Mr Cool to Mars A Day (#27)

Mars a Day

Yeah...saw that just after I posted. What can I say - its Friday and I'm killing time on client site to justify billing the afternoon...

How disappointing. Does this mean that all those consultants that cared so much about their appearance are now the ones posting about impending redundancies? Priorities huh?

I shall console myself with the fact that our combined sartorial wisdom is preserved here for all eternity like a five year old copy of GQ in a dentists waiting room.

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