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Clearly, there is no strict dress code that the employees are expected to follow. The dress code is seen as one way to communicate the culture and values of an organization or company, and even aid it in its goal attainment. In fact, some would even go so far as to say that the dress code is a tool for brand management, since it has something to do with how the organization manages external perception.
On a personal level, employees tend to seek a sense of belonging in the workplace, and adhering to rules and regulations is one way to demonstrate that they are part of the team or the organization.
By dressing according to the rules set out in the company dress code, they are joining the others. They are part of the organization, and they are cooperating with the other employees. Today, there are several dress codes applicable to different occasions and in different settings. They include casual wear, formal attire, cocktail attire, and even country club attire.
For this discussion, we will talk about the Business Attire. It is as straightforward as it sounds: However, it is not limited to one look, since there are several type of business attire currently in use today. One primary consideration is the place where the individual will be in. There is an appropriate business attire for someone working in an office, and someone in a receptionist desk in the lobby of an office building.
Similarly, a person who goes to work in a location that experiences cold weather most of the year will also be observing a dress code that is different from someone whose offices are located in tropical countries. As an example, let us look into the marketing department of a retail company. If you look to the corner of the office where the PR specialists and marketing analysts are, you may find them wearing tailored pants and pencil skirts, paired with pristine and pressed button-down shirts or collared blouses.
Now if you turn to the other end of the office, where the employees who are in charge of graphic and creative design are holed up in, you will no doubt find them comfortably clad in jeans, sneakers, and flannel shirts. That is because they are not usually required to go out and interact with clients of the company, which is what the PR specialists often do. The culture of an organization also has a lot to do with how its dress code is developed.
Let us take the example of the publication Newsweek. It used to have a relaxed and casual dress code, with the staff free to choose their own clothes and accessories. Things became shaken up with the change of management , when new owner International Business Times IBT imposed a dress code with strict and specific rules, which include the following:. The types of business attire are categorized depending on the degrees of formality involved. We will now take a look at the different types of business attire adapted in the dress codes of organizations.
That is often associated when one opts to wear a business attire. This business attire is most probably the default type that most people think of when they hear the phrase.
Look at the old-school organizations with a traditional or highly conservative attitude, and this is normally how they would require their students to dress. Think skirt or pant suits paired with formal business tops or blouses for women. Those wearing skirts will wear stockings and choose a pair of closed leather shoes. They are advised to keep their perfume subtle, and the type of jewelry understated yet elegant. Men, on the other hand, may be toting a brief case where they put their business documents in.
They wear leather shoes, and choose a conservative pen tucked into their breast pocket. Since this is traditional, propriety is of utmost importance. There is no room for revealing clothing here, because you have to be as covered as you possibly can. Avoid clothing that reveal your cleavage or your midriff. It goes without saying that backless pieces are also unwelcome in this dress code.
This is usually seen in a traditional and formal business environment. Boardrooms, or places where top management or senior managers convene for strategic meetings may be seen sporting these attire. If you go to work every day in an office where you are required to wear something conservative as to give off a professional vibe, then you are following the Business Professional type of attire.
It is safe to say that this dress code is the basic type. Companies that impose this dress code type want to achieve want thing: At the same time, it also presents the company to be somewhat conservative, without being overly rigid in sticking to the traditional. Men can ditch their dress shoes and opt for comfortable leather shoes instead. They can trade their dress shirts and dark suits with a button down shirt and a blazer, or even a suit jacket of a lighter color. The tie need not be silk, and the linen squares may be removed altogether.
Women are not limited to wearing skirts, because they may choose to use a pants suit instead. Day-to-day office work in offices that are primarily focused on functions on finance, accounting and other corporate divisions often require the professional look. If you are headed to an important meeting where you will be put in a position of having to convince someone, this is also the go-to outfit. To put this type simply, take a look at the usual professional attire you use daily.
Upgrade it — make it dressier without going over the top — and you have Business Formal. It is definitely a bit dressier than the business professional attire. For example, men may wear a dress suit and a silk tie, completed by a suit of a dark color. This also often calls for cufflinks and silk or linen pocket squares to be worn.
Instead of practical leather shoes, they will go for dress shoes that go well with the pants or the suit that they are wearing. Women, on the other hand, may take their inspiration from the traditional business attire, but choosing a blouse or top made of silk or some other smooth material.
A skirt is preferred over a pantsuit, and the shoes must be pumps or heels with closed toes. Business functions and events that take place in the evenings, such as dinners and galas, and maybe even award ceremonies, will be appropriate settings for one to wear a formal attire.
Comfort is the primary consideration when business casual attire is mentioned. The management wants its employees to work comfortably, so they are not so rigid when it comes to the dress code. However, they still have to look professional. When they say business casual, you can say goodbye to having to wear a suit. Skirts should always sit at or just above the knee. A collared blouse or dress-material top is recommended, and should either be tucked in or fall just below your waistline.
Tops should never hang below the hem of your suit jacket, or be so short that they show your stomach. Always be cautious that dress shirts are not too revealing in any business setting. Pantyhose are not required, however during the fall and winter seasons, darker pantyhose or tights are recommended when wearing skirts. Depending on the colour or tone of your suit, a black or brown belt should be worn. Coloured or white belts are not recommended. Never wear white socks with a suit. Dress socks should always be worn, preferably in a tone matching your suit and shoes.
When in doubt, wear black dress socks. Optional accessories for men include cufflinks or a pocket-square. The material should match the tie. Shoes, boots, flats, open-toed and closed-toed shoes in a leather or dress material are appropriate and should be clean and polished. These should be in good taste, with limited visible body piercing. Makeup should be used minimally to represent a natural look.
That said, even if dress is more casual, it may show ambition to dress it up a bit. For her: From tailored pants to dresses (not more than an inch or two above the knee), women have options. Aim to keep footwear relatively conservative. Business Casual for Women How you dress says a lot about your personality, especially in the workplace. When you’re in a position, no matter what it is, you always want to look your best, you never know what opportunities could come your way, and you certainly want to look professional at all times. Business Professional Attire vs. Business Casual Attire One reason that it's important to ask, is that you could have interviewed on a dress-down work day, so don't assume that the way you see people dressed is how you should dress on the job.