Via 9Honey : What you wear to work could get you fired
There’s a basic rule of thumb for dressing in the workplace; dress for the work culture, not just for your own pleasure. Not many people would feel comfortable wearing ‘gardening clothes’ or ‘cruise ship wear’ to an office, or if you’re in a role where you have to deal with clients. But some people feel they can get away with wearing, well, almost anything.
If there is no dress code in place, you’ll need to look around and see what kind of clothing the other staff are wearing. You don’t have to wear the same as everybody else. But if your colleagues are wearing conservative clothes and not miniskirts, then it might be a good idea to follow suit.
Of course, there will always be ‘that person’ who insists on dressing to suit themselves, no matter what. He/she believes they look fabulous in the latest torn jeans from H&M, or they’d like to reveal as much skin as possible to show off their latest spray tan.
But how much attention should you really be paying to what you wear at work?
Etiquette expert Anna Musson told 9Honey, people are opening themselves up for criticism if they don’t dress appropriately for their workplace.
“With the prevalence of business casual as work attire, under dressing or inappropriate choices are a common theme for employers which can result in tricky situations in the workplace,” Musson says.
“At least, inappropriate attire can cause co-workers to feel uncomfortable, at worst, you can be given a written warning or if you’ve had one before, you could be shown the door.”
When it comes to fireable offences, it’s important to remember that perception is everything. Dressing like a knowledgeable professional requires a sense of what’s appropriate which means: cover up.
“Dressing for your Friday night drinks at a 9am client meeting sends a message that partying is of greater value to you than their account. If the client complains or withdraws their business after the meeting with you in hotpants (guys and girls), that outfit has just cost thousands/millions and quite possibly your job.”
People management specialist Karen Gately believes a company doesn’t always need an official dress code. People should also use their common sense and realise it all comes down to the cultural environment that you work in.
“That’s the number one rule. Every business will have a dress code, even if it’s unofficial, that’s reflective of what they want to say to their customers about who they are, and what they stand for,” Gately says.
“So some organisations, will be very conservative, but others will be very liberal. So you need to understand what’s considered culturally appropriate and what fits with company policy.”
Musson says these are the most questionable choices when it comes to dressing for work:
2. Tank tops/singlet tops
3. Off the shoulder tops
4. Backless outfits
5. Attire that shows nipples on men or women
6. See through or translucent clothes
7. Mini skirt (skirt so short you cannot sit down without placing something in your lap for modesty)
While Gately says it’s unlikely someone could get fired for turning up in one particular outfit; they’re more likely to be sent home and told not to dress like that again, it would be a different story if you were a repeat offender.
“If you continually fail to demonstrate a level of professionalism the company wants, it will start to erode their trust in you. And really, it’s about the extent to which your choice of dress is considered respectful,” Gately says.
“If you’re dealing with very conservative clients, such as elderly clients, and you keep coming into work with plunging necklines and look like you’re going to a nightclub – plus the boss keeps saying asking you to dress more professionally, then that will become a major problem if you don’t comply.”
There’s a handy saying: you should dress the way you want to be addressed. According to Musson, it’s a pretty simple rule to stick to.
“The reality is that each workplace has its own culture – whether it’s funky, conservative, casual or uniform, dressing for the culture and to exceed expectations is a key element in professional success. Dress like the boss!”
Via Independent : Only One In 10 Now Wear A Suit To Work, Study Finds
Over half of workers believe a casual dress code is more affordable and takes less upkeep
Only one in 10 employees now wears a suit to work, according to a study.
Researchers who polled 2,000 workers found the modern British office is more likely to be staffed by professional gentlemen dressed in jeans or chinos, long-sleeved button shirts and a smart blazer or jacket with a pair of loafers or smart trainers.
It also emerged seven out of 10 dress casually for work because it makes them feel more comfortable.
And more than one fifth said they felt more able to express their personality.
Over half of workers believe a casual dress code is more affordable and takes less upkeep, whilst one in four said it takes the pressure off having to look good all the time.
Forty three per cent of workers believe the business suit no longer has a place in the office and if they saw a colleague wearing a suit to work they would stick out like a sore thumb.
Since the 19th century, the staple lounge suit has been classed by workers as the dress code for success and power, when city streets and public transport was awash with smartly dressed workers in power suits.
Buy nowadays, more than three quarters of British workers dress down for work with casual Friday happening every day.
Travelodge, which operates 559 hotels and annually looks after around 10 million business customers surveyed 2,000 British workers to investigate the modern office dress code – after hotel managers reported a decline in the number of ties, cufflinks, tie pins and suits being left behind.
Professor Karen Pine, psychologist at Hertfordshire University, said: “Over the last three decades, we have experienced a big movement in the workplace, where traditions and protocols have fallen enormously.
“The biggest changes have included the decline of the hierarchy, the boss being less of an authoritarian figure and more of a coach, all colleagues being called by their first name and the biggest change, the transition from a formal dress code to a casual one.
“Having a dress-down Friday every day enables workers to be independent, and showcase their personality and attributes by how they dress rather than the position they hold, which leads to stronger bonds between co-workers and removes barriers, enabling everyone to get on with their jobs.”
While there has been a more dramatic shift in male work attire, women have adapted their look too amid the trend for casual work clothes.
There was a time when women would have worn shoulder-pad power suits not for power but in order to fit into the boy’s club and be ‘taken seriously.’
The work wardrobe would have consisted of a slightly below-the-knee skirt suit, preferably in grey or dark blue, with a white blouse, a scarf tie and high heels.
But women are now more likely to wear skinny jeans, a smart jacket, a t-shirt or top and sneakers or flat shoes.
Professor Pine added: “Interestingly, women have probably benefited from this movement more than men.
“In the past, women had to dress like men to reach senior positions in the workplace.
“Now they can dress as they like and assert their individuality through their work attire, without fear of bumping up against the glass ceiling.”
When quizzed about dying work fashion trends, 42 per cent of workers believe the tie has fallen out of favour.
One in seven workers think the tie, which has been around since the Roman times, died a death as a piece of office attire in the 2010s, while tie-clips fell out of favour in the late 80s.
Two thirds of workers think high-waisted trousers would look out of place in the office these days.
And only a quarter of adults think trouser braces would blend in in a modern workplace, with three in five admitting they would scoff at a colleague in a waistcoat.
For men, a traditional shirt, a smart jacket and a pair of formal shoes have survived as office dress in the work place over the last three decades and for women, high heels, a black blazer and blouse, are also items that have remained as staples of the work wear wardrobe.
Respondents were also asked which business figures have influenced the change in work attire over the years.
Virgin founder, Sir Richard Branson, took the top spot as the smart casual style guru.
Branson, now 67, famously ditched a suit and tie in the mid-nineties in favour of an open-neck shirt and pair of Levi’s jeans.
In second place was Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, with his “stylised blandness” of casual grey t-shirt and jeans.
He famously said that by wearing the same outfit each day, he had much more time to think about more important matters.
Iconic fashion designer, Donna Karan, who built her company around her smart casual “Essentials” women clothing line claims fourth position.
In fifth place is business woman Whitney Wolfe, founder of dating app Bumble, who is famous for attending meetings in a blazer, jeans and flat shoes.
Shakila Ahmed, Travelodge spokeswoman said: “As the UK’s first budget hotel brand, over the last three decades our hotel teams across our 559 hotels have reported a decline in the number of business customers checking in kitted out in a traditional three piece business suit.
“Also we have seen a rapid decline in the number of ties, cufflinks, tie pins and suits being left behind at our hotels.
“There was a time when we could have tied all the ties left behind our hotels to cover the length of the UK.
“Today’s modern business travellers have adopted a smarter, comfortable, casual look and are travelling with less items of clothing with them.”
Via Hawaii Business : 5 Steps to a New Look for Work
In the new year, many women and men want to freshen their looks but still appear professional for work. Kim Smith, a wardrobe stylist in Honolulu since 2004, offers these tips on how to get started.
Before you hit the stores, thoroughly look through your work wardrobe. Discard anything that doesn’t fit, is stained or damaged in any way, or simply doesn’t suit your style anymore. Then organize your wardrobe to make your morning routine easier. I like to coordinate my wardrobe into tops and bottoms and then again into colors. Make it work for you.
2. Hit the stores if your work attire is all black.
For spring and summer 2018, fashion designers showed an abundance of color. Be ahead of the pack and find a hue that you feel comfortable adding to your work wardrobe. Racing green is a good place to begin but find a color palette that works for your new image.
3. A crisp shirt is a classic but styles have changed.
For men, look for collarless, buttonless or color. Women should look for armless, unusual shapes and prints. Remember: First impressions count, so looking to revamp your image even with just a new shirt is important.
4. Freshen up your shoes.
Maybe all you need is to give an old pair a polish, but if you’ve had your current shoes for more than a year it might be time to search for a new style – plus, a new pair will give renewed support and make you walk tall. If you feel comfortable you’ll exude confidence.
5. Take a good look in the mirror.
Over time, skin tone or hair color and texture change, so consider updating your hairstyle and makeup, too. Look through magazines or the internet for ideas and then head to a good hairdresser or makeup store for a consultation.
Via US News : What to Wear to Work
Dress for your audience and don’t let your clothes distract from your professional accomplishments.
For six months, Edward Rangel excelled as a waiter at a Red Robin in Bellevue, Washington. Customers and supervisors might occasionally notice the small religious inscriptions he had tattooed around his wrists, but no one complained about them, and they didn’t interfere with his duties serving food.
Then a new manager started at the franchise. Displeased by the tattoos, the boss told Rangel to conceal the ink, citing company policy. Rangel explained his belief that covering the tattoos violated his Kemetic faith and asked the company to accomodate his religion. Management refused to make an exception on the grounds that changing its dress code policy would undermine its “wholesome image.” So Rangel was fired.
That’s when the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission stepped in, filing a suit to defend Rangel’s right to an accomodation. Red Robin eventually agreed to settle the case, paying Rangel $150,000 and making policy changes to protect the rights of other employees.
Choosing work attire poses a perennial puzzle. Companies often have both explicit dress code policies and unspoken rules about the unofficial office dress code, but as Rangel’s story demonstrates, those rules can’t infringe on workers’ rights. And just because an outfit is allowed at the office doesn’t necessarily mean it will make a good impression on your boss or clients.
Read on to learn how to dress for success at work.
What’s legal at work?
Companies are legally allowed to implement and enforce a dress code as long as it is reasonable and tied to a legitimate business purpose, says J.J. Conway, an attorney who specializes in employment law.
What’s appropriate for the office?
Choosing appropriate work attire depends on your industry, company and specific job function. The key consideration? “Dressing for your audience,” says Jacqueline Whitmore, etiquette expert and founder of The Protocol School of Palm Beach.
People who work in creative fields, like media, advertising, entertainment or cosmetology, may have more freedom to express their personalities in their clothing, Whitmore says. In those careers, bright colors, funky accessories and innovative hairstyles may be acceptable or even expected.
Conversely, employees in conservative fields like wealth management or a government agency often must dress more formally, sometimes in suits.
No matter your general industry, your company will likely have written or unwritten corporate culture rules for what to wear to work. Figuring out what’s acceptable may take research and a bit of inference. When you first go into an office for a job interview, make sure to look at what your interviewer and the other employees are wearing and take mental notes.
After you’re hired, if your workplace lacks a written dress code policy, or if you want more clarification, it’s best simply to inquire with the human resources department, says Edward Yost, manager of employee relations and development at the Society for Human Resource Management.
“Ask the questions rather than blindly roll the dice and send the wrong message,” he says.
Even if your company has a general set of guidelines, what you should wear depends on your particular job responsibilities. People who work in customer service jobs, for example, should dress for the comfort of their clients and in ways that project competence, Whitmore says.
Regardless of the particulars of your company dress code or office culture, office clothes should fit well, be clean and cover what children call “private parts.”
“Presentation is the most important,” says Bridgette Raes, personal stylist and author. “No matter what you’re wearing, make sure it’s in good shape, well cared for and you look groomed.”
What is business casual attire?
Many office environments call for business professional or business casual attire. That typically means slacks, khaki pants or modest skirts or dresses; cardigans, blouses or button-down collared shirts; and closed-toe dress shoes. Raes suggests putting thought into work bags, too: “Don’t take the same grubby backpack you carried all over your college campus.”
In terms of what not to wear, it’s important not to distract others with your outfits, Raes says. “You want to make sure you’re standing out for the right reasons,” not because your clothes call attention to you, she explains.
There are two universal “don’ts” for how to dress business casual: no shorts and no flip flops. Beyond that, Raes advises against casual sandals, sweatshirts, any type of “athleisure” wear and clothing that is distressed or ripped. Outfits that are too revealing are not appropriate for the office.
Dress for the job you want
It may sound trite, but experts agree that you should dress for the job you want, not the job you have. Taking clothing cues from your boss could help you attain his or her position in the future.
You never want your manager to question your professional capabilities because of your outfits. Supervisors sometimes have to “fight the stereotype or that silent judgment that’s been formulated” because of what a worker wears, Yost says. “People who don’t work with the individual on a day-to-day basis may see the tattoos, piercings, vintage clothing that’s not your standard business casual, and when they’re up for a promotion, the question will come: ‘How serious are they?'”
This also means to think carefully about what to wear to an interview. It’s important to dress to impress when you’re hoping to get hired, so even if the company usually follows a business casual dress code, consider donning formal business attire. For example, after a period of job seeking, one of Raes’ clients changed the outfit she wore during interviews and saw immediate results: She received three job offers in one week.
The lesson? “When we change how we present ourselves, we send our message more effectively,” Raes says.
What happens if you violate the dress code?
If you had to wear a uniform in school, you’re probably familiar with the impulse to disobey the dress code. And although your boss probably won’t make you stand up in front of your co-workers while she measures the length of your hem, employers may take punitive action against workers who repeatedly violate the office dress code.
There’s usually a “progressive discipline process,” Yost says, meaning that a manager or HR representative may treat a first-time violation as a learning opportunity: “We’re not going to send you home today, but going forward, we would prefer you not wear jeans with rips and holes in them.”
If someone continually flouts the rules, an employer might send him or her home and dock pay. And if the problem continues, the employee may be fired.
What’s appropriate for the office gym?
Office gyms are popular perks, but they are also landmine fields when it comes to clothing. Employees who work out at the company gym should remember that they’ll likely run into their co-workers while putting in miles on the treadmill or lifting weights. Avoid wearing T-shirts with offensive slogans or outfits that are excessively revealing, Raes recommends: “You’re still in the workplace; this is not personal time.”
What’s appropriate for the office holiday party?
Similarly, treat your office holiday party as a work experience that requires appropriate dress. Your boss will take note if you wear anything too revealing or silly.
“You want to continue to send a professional and positive message,” Yost says. “People make silent judgments all the time. They’re not going to come up and tell you, ‘That tie you wore was stupid and I lost a lot of respect for you,’ but it still may be happening in their minds.”
On Halloween, if your workplace permits employees to wear costumes, keep yours reasonable.
What about tattoos and piercings?
Attitudes toward tattoos in the workplace and piercings in the workplace have changed in the past few decades, but not every employer will be happy to see them, Yost says.
“[Tattoos] are generally more accepted than they would have been 10 or 15 years ago,” he says. “However, there are going to be some ‘family-run’ environments, or ‘family-friendly’ environments who may be a little more rigid: ‘Sure you can have your tattoos, but we’re going to ask you to keep them covered while at work.'”
If you’re wondering how to cover up tattoos for work, Yost recommends long-sleeved shirts, strategically placed Band-Aids or applying foundation makeup that’s the same color as your skin tone.
Dress code discrimination
Many standards of “professional work attire” were created decades ago on the assumption that typical employees would be white men. Today, some workers find office dress codes are not flexible enough to take into account their cultural practices.
If people who express their religious beliefs through clothing such as hijabs, turbans or kippas, or, like the Red Robin waiter, through religious tattoos, encounter dress codes that don’t permit them to wear their faith-inspired garb, they should seek accommodations from the human resources department, Conway says.
“If there is a legitimate religious belief or cultural practice tied to race, origin or gender, a request can be made for an exception,” he explains.
Legally, workplace dress codes must be applied equally to all employees. That doesn’t always happen, though. Some employers discriminate against particular employees, either because of racial, gender or religious prejudice or just a personal conflict.
“If an employer is applying a neutral policy against an employee specifically to discriminate because of something they can’t change, that is a violation of the law,” Conway says.
Black women sometimes encounter unfair workplace prejudice for wearing their hair in natural styles, says Sherry Sims, founder of the Black Career Women’s Network. For example, one of her clients who worked for a financial institution was barred from attending a work conference specifically because of her hairstyle.
“I haven’t always been natural in the workplace,” Sims says. “Early in my career, I felt I had to conform to that in order to be understood or accepted or taken seriously.”
If you experience workplace discrimination because of your appearance, you’ll have to decide whether you think your manager or your company’s HR department will take your complaint seriously, both Sims and Conway say. If the department is unlikely to take action, you can file a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Either way, document the discrimination.
Via NBC News : André Leon Talley’s top work wardrobe tips for millennials
“You are not all that. You can’t wear just anything,” says the contributing editor for Vogue.
So you nailed your interview and got your dream job or internship. It turns out, what you wear at work matters a great deal too.
You may think it sounds superficial, but how you look says a lot about you—whether you’re organized, laid-back, fashion-forward, creative or serious. It influences how our co-workers and bosses treat us – and, just as importantly, how we feel about ourselves.
André Leon Talley, contributing editor for Vogue, recently shared with Mika Brzezinski and I, some tough love advice for my generation:
“Millennials need to have (clothing) guidelines. You are not all that. You can’t wear just anything.” – Andre Leon Talley null
I learned this lesson awkwardly. When I interned in the offices of Bad Boy Entertainment in New York City in 2012, I was surrounded by larger-than-life women executives who were dressed to the nines – oftentimes in brand name dresses and stilettos. So I decided to give the old “dress for the job you want” advice a try.
One morning, one of the women executives called me over to give me my task for the day. Proudly, I walked over strutting my new knockoff designer dress and high heels. I approached her desk. She looked me up and down. Surely she was going to comment on how fashion-forward I looked – or so I thought.
Instead, she smirked at my 20-year-old self “I know you’re trying to do your ‘thing,’ but right now I need you to go upstairs and assemble the swag closet,” she told me. #Fail.
Lesson learned: As an intern, dressing the part of an executive wasn’t the best idea.
But don’t take it from me. Take it from Talley. The fashion guru recently gave Know Your Value work style tips that go beyond simply “dressing for the part you want.”
Here are Talley’s dos and don’ts:
STICK TO THE BASICS:
The good news? You don’t have to spend a fortune looking work-ready. Talley believes you should stick to the basics when you first start out. “You can put on a blouse from H&M.” He added, “A simple skirt, I don’t care what the skirt is, or a simple pair of pants from Uniqlo, and just a pair of black shoes.”
NIX THE HAUTE COUTURE
Talley has seen his fair share of young professionals make risky fashion choices to stand out. You may think you need those expensive shoes or brand name dresses. But the reality is, if you are an intern or are just starting out, you’ll be tasked with doing some grunt work. So keeping it simple with your clothes is your best bet.
Talley also touched on this issue in Mika’s book, Growing Your Value, when he shared the story of a time he was interviewing applicants to become his assistant.
Hoping to impress him, one job candidate came in wearing Gucci and Calvin Klein. But what he really thought was: “She spent more time preparing the right brand, or what she thinks I would like, because it’s Vogue, than the substance when I am asking her questions!”
BUT DON’T GO TOO CASUAL
With that being said, simple is not the same as casual, and as Talley says, “Casual is not the way.” You have to show you care.
“Casual in college is one thing. You don’t have to be dressed in a certain way, or dressed to the nines. But you’ve got to be neat. You’ve got to be presentable and mannered.” – Andre Leon Talley null
PAY ATTENTION TO THE DETAILS
According to Talley, a big part of style (aside from the clothes you wear) is presentation. Those details matter big time. He recalled a time he was at a hotel restaurant for the holidays and a college-aged woman was waiting on him. Aside from her not being attentive and avoiding eye contact, he remembered, “She had the worst nails. She had chipped her nail polish.”
Talley, known for his bold personality, decided to do something about it. “I went to the manager of the hotel and told him, ‘She has got to get it together,’ because that girl is unpresentable.” It worked. The next time he saw the young woman, she seemed like a different person.
She changed her attitude, suddenly saying things like, “Good morning Mr. Talley. It’s a lovely day, isn’t it?” She started following up with him, being attentive and making sure he was being taken care of. “And then I see that she has clean nails! She just had simple but clean nails, not some vampire goth-looking thing,” he said.
Another big “don’t” in the workplace according to Talley? “Lots of earrings”
“I don’t care if you are male or female. Lots of earrings in the ear are just terrible. Nose rings are forbidden in the workplace. Earrings yes, but a nose ring… Nose rings are forbidden.”
SHOW YOU CARE
Work style is also in the way you present yourself, so take some pressure off yourself by keeping it simple with the clothes you wear and focus more on the way you carry yourself.
That includes your body language and your presence. “Bottom line is you have to show you care, that you are alert, and that you are present. Showing you care in the full package,” said Talley.