What to wear to an informal coffee chat with an alum

hardest_hardo69's picture
Rank: Baboon | 112

I have an informal coffee chat scheduled downtown in my city (North America) with an alum who's 2 years older than me (still an analyst). He and I have met before and although I wouldn't say we're friends, we've spoken multiple times throughout the last two years. I was wondering if I'd still need to wear a suit (with no tie) or if I could just get away with slacks and a dress shirt.

Comments (6)

Dec 31, 2019

Absolutely you can get away with slacks and a dress shirt. You're past the courting phase. He likes you enough to keep in contact. Feel free to let a little more of your personality show through.

Dec 31, 2019

I cannot offer info on your side of the coin, but here is my experience (Large AM firm manager in NYC)

-As long as you look decent, the fact that you're already here means that you passed the sniff test. Dress appropriately, but don't force formality

-What time of day (you shouldn't be the one dictating this) If it's 10:30AM then coffee is a good idea. If I'm meeting you after 5 then why aren't we at a bar?

-Don't pick a place to impress. I've got clients like S&P who will take me to Le Bernardin whenever I want. I get that you're a college student. That well chosen $7 beer and $13 cheese and meat plate to split at Blind Tiger is more impressive (and proves resourcefulness, since it's impossible to get a table there-no reservations)

-Don't be a sycophant - I want to know if somebody I'm hiring loves the job and industry, or just loves the paycheck. Anyone scared of telling me "no" is worthless.

    • 1
Dec 31, 2019

Oh, also, I'll probably pay, but do not EVER assume that.

Jan 6, 2020

I used to go with a full suit to be on the safe side when doing coffee chats with bankers just to stay on the safe side, it's not a huge deal. Just rock the tie, most people won't think ill of you for being in a suit but could potentially if you're underdressed

Most Helpful
Jan 6, 2020

If you know this guy please don't show up in a full suit/tie. Slacks + dress shoes is fine don't overpush it.

    • 2
Jan 7, 2020
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