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Old 04-12-2011, 11:37 AM
 
Location: San Diego
25 posts, read 46,748 times
Reputation: 29

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Hi,

My husband has been applying for positions in Hawaii. He's had several phone interviews and now a potential employer wants to meet with him. They're flying him over next week for several meetings. Though the job itself is professional, the company portrays a casual atmosphere. Many of the employees wear nice aloha shirts and dress pants. If the job were in California, he'd be wearing a suit and tie, but this is Hawaii. He's unsure about wearing a suit. But, also is unsure about an aloha shirt because he's not hired yet. So, what to wear to a professional interview in Hawaii?

We're really excited about this opportunity. The company would be great to work for and it's a job be would truly enjoy.

Thank you!
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Old 04-12-2011, 12:42 PM
 
Location: Na'alehu Hawaii/Buena Vista Colorado
2,846 posts, read 4,673,078 times
Reputation: 2131
Are you talking about Honolulu? What kind of company?

Previous posters have advised calling and talking with the office manager and asking her what the protocol is.
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Old 04-12-2011, 01:05 PM
 
Location: Moku Nui, Hawaii
5,877 posts, read 9,565,152 times
Reputation: 3042
Asking the office manager for the protocol is a good idea. Since they are flying him over from the mainland for an interview, he can wear a suit if he wants to and they will understand where he is coming from. For the first interview he could wear a suit and then buy an aloha shirt for the second one if he feels it is appropriate. Although he could also wear an aloha shirt for the first interview, too.

As for which aloha shirt, Cooke Street, Tori Richard or Reyn Spooner all make "business" aloha shirts. A business aloha shirt is more refined than the tourist version. Better construction, colors and patterns that are more refined and not as bright and flashy as the tourist versions. Reyn Spooner has a shop in Ala Moana Shopping Center, I think. If you tell the clerk what you are looking for they can help you pick out one or two which would fit in at the office. Cooke Street used to have a shop on, well, Cooke Street although I think they are also sold by others now as well. They run about $60 - $100 for the good ones. They are much less expensive at thrift shops and such, but you need to know what to look for and for the kind of job it sounds like he is applying for, being able to say he bought it at Reyn Spooner's would probably be better than saying he bought it at Goodwill.

Getting one in all cotton is much more comfortable than polyester. Although he will probably be working in an air conditioned office, one would think.

If he showed up wearing an aloha shirt, it would show his willingness to fit in. If he showed up in a suit and asked where to get a nice aloha shirt like the one the interviewer is wearing and then got one from the place specified by the interviewer, that would also show a willingness to take advice from others and fit in as well. A lot of Hawaii is about fitting in and getting along with the group.
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Old 04-12-2011, 02:42 PM
 
Location: Wildside of Oahu
1,251 posts, read 1,522,806 times
Reputation: 1863
I would agree, a nice Aloha shirt and dress slacks are fine. I'd suggest Tommy Bahama. They have nice, washable silk slacks & shirts. My husband works in a "professional" capacity for an international firm and everyone, from the CEO, CFO, corp attorney wears aloha shirts to work.

Good luck with the interview. Make sure you guys do your due dilignence on the cost of living and factor that into his negotiations.
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Old 04-12-2011, 04:28 PM
 
Location: Volcano
12,518 posts, read 10,351,873 times
Reputation: 9625
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joliefille View Post
I would agree, a nice Aloha shirt and dress slacks are fine. I'd suggest Tommy Bahama. They have nice, washable silk slacks & shirts.
I second the motion. Long before I moved to Hawai'i and had access to buying da local kine, I was wearing Tommy Bahama to the office, West Coast, East Coast, and Third Coast. "Hawaiian Shirt Fridays" have been popular in high-tech offices for decades, and Seattle based Tommy Bahama capitalized on that to find early success with their silk "island style" shirts and casual slacks that defined "dressy casual with flair." Now they are sold at Macy's, Bloomingdales, and at their own stores in 25 states, plus online at Tommy Bahama Official Site: Island Inspired Men's Clothing, Women's Clothing, Men's Shirts, Swimwear, Apparel & More

Or if he finds that too much of a stretch to feel comfortable (I have friends like that) then I'd suggest a nice business shirt and slacks rather than a suit... no tie, no jacket.

Seriously, it's like every day is Casual Friday here.
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Old 04-13-2011, 07:50 AM
 
Location: Passed out on the trail to Hanakapi'ai
1,486 posts, read 2,291,769 times
Reputation: 954
You wear a wallstreet black suit and tie.
People will have Matrix flashbacks.
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Old 04-13-2011, 10:43 AM
 
Location: San Diego
25 posts, read 46,748 times
Reputation: 29
Thanks to everyone who posted replies! Your advice and information is appreciated.

My husband will probably over pack for this trip just to make sure he has it all covered! We liked the idea of dressing more traditional business like for the first meeting. He should be able to judge from that what would be appropriate for the next. I know he is definitely more comfortable in "business casual". He recently bought a subtle woven silk aloha shirt that will work. A few years ago I bought him a vintage Reyn Spooner in tiny brown floral print. I'll have him bring that one along for good luck!

Thanks again guys! I'll let you know how it goes. Hopefully I'll be posting back with good news!
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Old 04-15-2011, 02:58 AM
 
Location: Moku Nui, Hawaii
5,877 posts, read 9,565,152 times
Reputation: 3042
Whoohoo! Vintage Reyn Spooner! Folks will probably even know what year it came out, too. Much more status points for Reyn Spooner shirts than mainland made aloha shirts.

My DH has about thirty aloha shirts and the best ones either say "Reyn Spooner" on them or "Cooke Street". I'm sure there are other brands out there, too, but for the best ones for business wear, those are the brand names on the labels. He has a few Tommy Bahama ones, too, but those are more "resort casual" than "business aloha" if you get the distinction.
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Old 04-15-2011, 10:57 AM
 
Location: San Diego
25 posts, read 46,748 times
Reputation: 29
Hi Hotzcatz and everyone!

I'd love to know how old his Reyn Spooner is. It was a good find I picked up at a thrift store. He has a vintage 80's Kohala too but, it's way too wild for business. Gotta love a good thrift store!

I have to tell you guys that your were totally right on with your suggestions of what to wear. My husband received an email that included his itinerary and some dress code information. It specifically said no suits, no jackets!
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Old 04-15-2011, 02:53 PM
 
124 posts, read 249,644 times
Reputation: 131
HotCatz Wrote:

"A lot of Hawaii is about fitting in and getting along with the group."


Amen to that. Some of the smartest advice I have read on this board.
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