Interviews are something that nobody likes but cannot be avoided if you are looking at a corporate career
So Congrats, If you have got that interview call,
You will spend countless nights preparing all your answers, researching exhaustively about the company & deciding on your look on the interview day. That is when we hit the common question
Do I Need to shave or not before the interview?
The major question that most men with beards have to deal with when called for a job interview is whether to shave or not to shave before going for the interview. For many years now, there has been a standard practice in the corporate world about beards. In fact, most employers did not allow beard for interviews or even beards for employees after getting the job. There has always been a standard way of dressing and grooming which even forms part of a company’s dress code. The hair, the beard, and even the mustache are supposed to kept and trimmed at a maximum dictated level.
However, all this seems to be changing and all in the past. In the recent past, there has been an increase in bearded men allowed to work in the corporate set up as well as government. This applies across multi-sectoral areas of the economy. Today, you can easily spot senior executives in companies having beards. From CEOs like Jack Dorsey (Twitter) sporting a beard to Media personalities and bankers just to name a few. There seems to be a major shift from the previous way beards were initially viewed by multinationals. It has become more acceptable as people and companies accept the effects of change and diversity in the workplace.
So that brings us back to the same question do I need to keep my beard for the interview?
The Answer is it depends on a lot of factors
Here are six steps that will help you in making that important decision
HOW SHOULD I GET MY BEARD READY FOR AN INTERVIEW?
1)Research the company on Linked In:-
The standard practice has always been to shave it off or trim it nicely. However, the employer you are attending their interview really determines how you will prepare your beard. Of late there are those who will allow beards whereas there are those employers who still do not allow. One needs to do a research on the company to determine their stand on beards and general grooming. You wouldn’t want your beard to make you lose the job.
Go to linked in to do a company search & have a look at people who are working there. If you find that at least 10% of them are sporting facial hair, then you can decide to keep your beard on. Else you need to have a thinking of carrying that bearded look
2) Check out the Instagram account of the company
Almost every company is on Instagram nowadays. So this place becomes a good location to find out about people working in the company. Be careful of the descriptions though, if you are looking at MNC head office employee the images you see on the account may be head office or an international location where beard culture is incredibly different
3) Geography of your Job
The territory or region of where the employer operates will also dictate the normal practice of how beards are treated during interviews. Countries in the Middle East will generally allow men to have long beards at work. As a result, interviews will obviously attract men with long beards.
More often than not, the companies in trendy urban areas should be beard friendly. If you are in a rural area or a suburb, beards may be common, but a bit rare in the workplace
4) Your Religion
Other factors like religion may also determine how you trim or treat your beards during and after interviews. In Islam beard symbolizes growth and maturity. In some Jewish cultures also you will find beards being more prevalent. In the US, Amish have a long history of beards to symbolize maturity of a man. In such cases, the employer will have no option but to accept your faith.
5) Nature of your Job
The nature of your job could be perhaps the greatest factor in deciding future of your beard.
For Client facing roles like business development, data analysis etc it’s going to be safe move to shave your beard prior to the interview. Beyond client facing roles, if you are in food processing industry, due to sanitary reasons beard may not be allowed
6) Size of the company
If the company that you are applying for is a young startup, chances are that they don’t have a formal HR department & thereby guidelines around employee appearance. So in these young companies, it should be pretty safe to interview without worry of facial hair. But remember that there also client facing roles will have a rule of appearance
If after all these research you have made a decision to go ahead with your beard, then you will need to rework on look to make it professional
Trimming your beard for that interview look
If not sure about the company position on how to treat your beards, it is advisable to always trim it well before the interview. After getting the job then you can grow the beard based on the company policy. Despite the fact that there seems to be visible change on the view of long beards during interviews and at work, it is still a common practice to keep beards short and trimmed.
Trimming will make your beard more uniform. It will make your face neater and gets rid of flyaway split ends and makes you more presentable for the interview. Even the most minor trim will do magic for your look
Finally All the very best for your interview
Prepare, prepare and prepare
If you do that, dress appropriately and show up the confidence you will have a great chance of securing your next dream job