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Advantage of business casual: More options for suits? - Page 2

post #16 of 60
Manton's advice to young men in The Suit is totally in line with odoreater's sentiments. You want to stand out for your work, not for your love of paisley. That's just the breaks. If you look up any of the I-banker threads, you'll see a similar concern among the younger ranks about standing out. Simply put, you don't want to do it, esp during your first year. When I want to stand out, I wear a white linen pocket square with a sportcoat, not a Dre 3000 kit. And I work at a place which prides itself on a live-and-let-live atmosphere. In conservative professions like law and I-banking you carry a lot of bags before you get to rule the school, because there is serious money at stake. The people I know who ignore the prevailing dress norms have proven themselves, and rest assured they put the hours in. And no partner wants their guy friday to look better than him.
post #17 of 60
I am in-house at a large automotive company and I wear a suit everyday. Most of my peers dress "business bum". Now, the people in charge wear suits and ties. Guess who I want to emulate? Moreover, it pisses me off when my outside counsel dress like bums. I pay them enough - spend some cash on a decent suit. NO business casual shit either.
post #18 of 60
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LabelKing
What are fun ties and fun shirts?

I imagine it's something awful like Hawaiian shirts or Garfield ties.
Funny, but I have a classmate from Hawaii who told me that "aloha" shirts are formal wear in Hawaii and only tourists wear them to the beach.

Odoreater, this is ridiculous as usual. You see a post that, on a forum that generally looks down on business casual, talks about wearing a check shirt or a pink tie or tan shoes to work. Then you bust your nuts crying foul about "flamboyant outfits" and a new employee trying to stand out from everyone else?
post #19 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by dirk diggler
I am in-house at a large automotive company and I wear a suit everyday. Most of my peers dress "business bum". Now, the people in charge wear suits and ties. Guess who I want to emulate? Moreover, it pisses me off when my outside counsel dress like bums. I pay them enough - spend some cash on a decent suit. NO business casual shit either.

Your outside counsel may be thinking that if they wear too nice a suit when meeting with you, you'll ask them to knock down their bill. A choice between a __% fee reduction and leaving the Brioni at home is no choice at all.
post #20 of 60
this is really surprising specially because it involves members of the legal profession, whom i always believed should always be in proper decorum (so you wont be guarded once they stab you in the back! haha ) anyway, if i were in need of a alwyer, and i step in to an office where they counsel is dressed in casual wear, the first phrase that would enter my mind is "ambulance chaser".
post #21 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mentos
Manton's advice to young men in The Suit is totally in line with odoreater's sentiments. You want to stand out for your work, not for your love of paisley. That's just the breaks. If you look up any of the I-banker threads, you'll see a similar concern among the younger ranks about standing out. Simply put, you don't want to do it, esp during your first year. When I want to stand out, I wear a white linen pocket square with a sportcoat, not a Dre 3000 kit. And I work at a place which prides itself on a live-and-let-live atmosphere. In conservative professions like law and I-banking you carry a lot of bags before you get to rule the school, because there is serious money at stake. The people I know who ignore the prevailing dress norms have proven themselves, and rest assured they put the hours in. And no partner wants their guy friday to look better than him.
I think this is a very American attitude. Of course, in any culture, wearing intrusive clothing is probably not going to bode well, but really, being well-dressed in a generally restrained way is not something that's going to be regarded as deviant or as they say, uppity.
post #22 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by LabelKing
[b]eing well-dressed in a generally restrained way is not something that's going to be regarded as deviant or as they say, uppity.


I totally agree--I would never be afraid of some sort of ostracization for wearing well made clothing that is in keeping with the situation. You just ahve to be able to read the situation, and the american law officer generally is no longer a formal place.

I guesss my point is simply that junior professionals are in danger of not understanding their worki culture and thereby making unintentionally negative impressions. Of course, the greatest danger, in my experience, comes not from dressing too well, but from associates who treat people badly because they think they're above the staff, juniors, etc and associates who think they can collect the paycheck and hang on without creating good work product. Whose folks get a rude awakening sooner or later. At least at firms I've seen.
post #23 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by dirk diggler
Moreover, it pisses me off when my outside counsel dress like bums. I pay them enough - spend some cash on a decent suit. NO business casual shit either.

I hope you're making your wishes known to your outside counsel. I frequently hear tales of lawyers showing up at the client's for the first time to find themselves the only dark suit in a sea of Hawaiian shirts. It's a total crap shoot at businesses these days--lawyers have to ask ahead to be sure they make the right first impression.

And if a junior lawyer is doing a doc review on site, I don't see why it matters what they wear. It's the client's call, but it makes no sense to me.
post #24 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by josepidal
Odoreater, this is ridiculous as usual. You see a post that, on a forum that generally looks down on business casual, talks about wearing a check shirt or a pink tie or tan shoes to work. Then you bust your nuts crying foul about "flamboyant outfits" and a new employee trying to stand out from everyone else?

This is kind of funny. Somebody who is still in law school asks for advice on how something will be perceived in a law firm environment. Somebody who practices in a law firm environment gives them advice and their opinion, albeit, not the opinion that they were looking for, and they get called ridiculous. I'm not crying "foul" about anything. You can wear whatever the hell you want - you don't have to have my, or the forum's, approval about everything you wear. But, you'll see that what this forum thinks is good and acceptable is not always what is good and acceptable in the conservative halls of large law firms.

Like I said, my firm is business casual, but I wear a suit almost every day because that's the nature of my practice area and the culture in my practice group is slightly different than the rest of the firm. But, that doesn't mean that I wear suits that would not be acceptable for business in ordinary business situations. I don't take more leeway with the suits that I wear because my firm has a business casual policy. But, my own personal goal is to never be perceived as flamboyant or eccentric, but to be perceived as serious and dependable.
post #25 of 60
I do not know law firm culture because, thankfully, I only visit you people as a client and am never required to stay. I think that one of the points that is being missed here is the assumption that wearing louder shirts, more interesting suits and more interesting ties will make you look better. You would be best served dressing in a way that looked good but was still appropriate for your office. If you want to wear khakis and a sweater, that should be fine as it is business casual. If you want to wear a suit, wear a grey (or blue or striped) one, a nice shirt and a simple tie. If you get too creative for creativity's sakeyou may not be dressed too flamboyantly for the office, but you will probably look ridiculous. Looking ridiculous is always bad, no matter where you work.
post #26 of 60
Matt, I could not agree more. And whether something looks good, and is appropriate for whatever environment a person finds himself in, is a decision that has to be made based on the individual circumstances.
post #27 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by josepidal
Odoreater, this is ridiculous as usual. You see a post that, on a forum that generally looks down on business casual, talks about wearing a check shirt or a pink tie or tan shoes to work. Then you bust your nuts crying foul about "flamboyant outfits" and a new employee trying to stand out from everyone else?
Dude, if you came to my law firm dressed in a check shirt, pink tie, tan shoes, and an interesting suit, you would definitely draw unwanted attention to your clothing. While I don't fully share in odoreater's sober attitude, I think he's basically right. As we say at my work, although we are a business casual environment, we are not a casual business environment.

Don't fall into the mistake of thinking that just because you are actually dressing up "nicer" than most other associates because you wear a suit or sportscoat you can get away with a more casual suit or sportscoat, etc. For instance, I come to work in either a suit or sportscoat basically every day. I'd say maybe 5-10% of the other associates do this from time to time. This doesn't mean I can come to work in an orange-on-navy double-windowpane sportscoat with peak lapels and hacking pockets (or similarly "smart" attire), even if I might think that would be a great look outside of the office.
post #28 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick Bateman
Your outside counsel may be thinking that if they wear too nice a suit when meeting with you, you'll ask them to knock down their bill. A choice between a __% fee reduction and leaving the Brioni at home is no choice at all.

actually, I start thinking fee reductions when they tell me about their summer/winter home somewhere really nice and expensive or when I visit their offices and see a few paintings worth a couple of Mil apiece.
post #29 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mentos
I hope you're making your wishes known to your outside counsel. I frequently hear tales of lawyers showing up at the client's for the first time to find themselves the only dark suit in a sea of Hawaiian shirts. It's a total crap shoot at businesses these days--lawyers have to ask ahead to be sure they make the right first impression.

And if a junior lawyer is doing a doc review on site, I don't see why it matters what they wear. It's the client's call, but it makes no sense to me.

they know we are "business casual" here and sometimes they show up as such. Of course, those with any sense know the senior people wear suits so they at least put on a sportcoat and tie. Better to wear a suit and take the tie off then the opposite.
post #30 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by LabelKing
What are fun ties and fun shirts?

I imagine it's something awful like Hawaiian shirts or Garfield ties.
I don't know. Perhaps if Jose finds employment at one of the bizcaz places we will be able to answer that question along with the one about where an Asian from a tropical country can find fun ties in Boston and New York, and the one about how much they should cost, a hundred or two times
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