And BTW: I guess I had not "lost it" after all.
I looked up a few tie-tying references and both the Half and Full Windsor, the knot remains if the skinny end is pulled free, and they were very, very similar to what I did for my interviews.
I guess all those years working retail and at Douglas I was doing a 4-In-Hand or some incorrect hybrid that I thought was a Half-Windsor.
The knots always did seem a bit lopsided like the 4-In-Hand, which is popular but I really don't care for it, but I was able to tweak and square them up... so I'm not sure what I was doing.
Same company ... 10 years later. The dress code changed so that ties were no longer mandatory, and the no-tie, open-collar Oxford shirt became the default. Ties were optional, but I continued to wear mine since I was "Old School." I was in my mid-40s by then, and all of my co-workers were straight out of high school. Many customers assumed I was the Store Manager, primarily because I was the only one wearing a tie, but also because I projected the most professional and competent image of everyone in the store, even out-doing the REAL Store Manager in that regard.
Even today, when I go out to a nightclub for a night of drinks and dancing, I like to wear a tie. It has become somewhat of a trademark item for me. Many of the regulars that don't know my name refer to me as "That Tie Guy." And it never fails to attract a lot of attractive women.
I've noticed a lot of younger, college-age guys wearing ties at the clubs now, but none of them seem to be able to get it right. The knots are wrong. Too tight or too loose or made wrong. They don't know how to get the length correct so that it hangs just above the belt, either it is too high or too low. But at least they're trying. I think ties are just a fad among that age crowd, and it will be over in a year or so and they will go back to their T-shirts with sports teams or rock band logos.
But one thing I've learned down through the years ... no matter where you are or what you're doing, its better to be overdressed than underdressed. I can always take off my tie if it seems like I'm too stuffy and formal for the occasion. But wearing one helps me to stand out, subtly and quiet, and projects just the right amount of class, elegance and panache without being gaudy or ostentatious.
I Came. I Shaved. I Conquered.
Just a suggestion, I would find if the company or organization had a logo etc.
If so I would use the colors of the logo as a guide to the color of my tie.
It's a tough call in the dress code.
Douglas was a pretty professional environment among those who wore ties, which was all salaried men, and the union office men who were wanting to move up. For the most part, the office looked good. Shirts and ties were good quality and properly arranged and maintained through the day. The only thing that got me as being a little "low class" was a common habit of tossing the tie over the shoulder when eating.
My feeling was "I'm wearing a $30 pinpoint Oxford shirt and a $12 silk tie... I'd rather sacrifice the tie!"
Now, in retail... Trak Auto we had uniforms, so it was only the managers who wore ties, and again, generally wore them well.
What can I say.
Take a minimum wage employee who may or may not be out of school and you get a very interesting mixture of looks, even among management.
Being 25 and my experience with "nice" was growing up in church and my dad being a mechanic on the Apollo program, I was just as guilty as a lot of the kids who worked for me.
Too much polyester, poorly fitted shirts, knitted ties.... and of course, well stained from sweat and dirt from handling boxes and paperwork by the end of the day.
The "Nerd Herd" on the NBC series "Chuck" looked more classy than we did. We looked like a hillbilly had been handed the keys to the local Goodwill and told to pick out a suit
So depending on the group of employees, such a dress code may or may not be a good thing.
In a different time and place? Certainly. But common styles have big differences from the west to the east coasts, and some people just don't seem to have it in their DNA to dress out nicely. Everyone can be taught, but without a mentor, sometimes a dress code ends up making the company look more amateurish than if the employees were allowed to wear something that looked nice and they were comfortable in.
And this goes back to being comfortable for the interview.
You want to dress out. You may even want to overdress... but you don't want to be the guy that stands out because of the brown shoes, blue slacks, and white jacket.
I don't know when you were there, but I've watched that company go downhill since I started there. Speaking of downhill, have you looked at the stock price lately? No one can figure out how they stay in business.
Personally, I'm guessing that the demise of The Company We Love to Hate will coincide with the end of the Mayan Calendar. This GQ will be the last one, and by January (if the world as a whole hasn't ended) Radio$hack will close their doors for good. Nothing left but scraps to be sold off to a liquidator, and the remaining stores will be sold or leased to one of the BigBox retailers like BestBuy or WalMart who want to open specialty shops for consumer electronics.
Last edited by dpm802; 06-24-2012 at 05:08 PM.
I Came. I Shaved. I Conquered.
I was with them in the late 80s. I was apparently so good at turning around crap stores that my DM kept putting me into them, I'd make them profitable, and he'd move me on.
I was given the Whittier Quad after the Whittier Narrows earthquake and there were only 6 businesses left in the mall.
Didn't bother me. The stores I was in had been so horrible on losses that they were on the "T" plan. Manager bonus was 10% of turnaround profit, rather than 10% of bottom line profit.
Even though my sales were terrible and the stores were barely pulling a profit, I was doing well enough to clear $40k in 1987.
When I left the company, Dave Thirion had just been made my Regional Manager, Craig Steves had been my DM for about 6 months, and Bernie Appell was still one of the head guys with John Roach in Fort Worth.
Interview tie? You want it to be utterly classic, conservative, and forgettable ... I'd go for a blue that is a bit lighter than the suit, either plain or with a small, repeating pattern (dots are ideal.) See here ...
Be there or be square. Only I can do both!
I've got a cat named Beefeater and a dog named Beefeater, and two goldfish called Beefeater and Beefeater. There's Beefeater my hamster and Beefeater my horse, and my piglet, known as Beefeater of course.
Veteran of the Great Irisch Moos Campaign of 2008-09
Having owned an insurance agency for 6 years, I have hired well over 250 agents. I now work for the same insurance company but on the corporate side where I run the national sales recruiting strategy, so I thought I'd chime in here from a recruiter's perspective. All of the advice in this thread is good but broad, meaning, your attire should depend on the position and industry that you are interviewing for. If it is something in the marketing/media side of things, then creativity is appreciated and a muted/forgettable tie may not get you as far as a guy equally qualified but but with a more creative wardrobe. If you're looking at a sales position, I always preferred my guys to be "conservatively confident", i.e. the outfit you have chosen but with a bold tie and sleek brown shoes, a much more modern look IMO. Anyways, the point is, dress for the position but most importantly, dress to your personality...remember whoever you are in the interview is who you are going to be expected to be at work and of you can't be yourself at work, you'll eventually hate our job...
My 2 cents...Good luck with the interview!
Drakes of London? Their ties make me want to wear a tie to work every day.
henry (@) badgerandblade.com