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Do you care how your coworkers dress? Does the decline of formality of dress bother you?

Saturdays

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I can not stand people who don't at least try to dress up to work. I honestly don't mind casual, as long as it looks and fits nice, and isn't sweats/fleece, tracksuits, leggings on women (men would be worse, thank god i've never encountered such), or ugly raggedy denim. Fortunately, most people where I work at least dress in slacks and typical dress shirt. I'm usually the only one who wears a tie, and the only one who wears a sport coat.

If it was up to me, everyone at work would look like they belonged in the TV Show 'Boardwalk Empire'.
 
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archibaldleach

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Just a post to somewhat guide the responses: The intent of this thread isn't what you wear to work and how it compares to everybody else. Many people have hangups about dressing better than co-workers, which is a confidence conversation in its own. However, do you think everybody should be dressed up for work? How can it help/hurt a company, or a culture to have everybody dressed as opposed leniency?


As I think about this, it's possible that different work environments benefit from different dress codes. The added level of formality and fastidiousness that comes with a business formal environment can make more sense in a conservative client-oriented field like accounting or law vs. more creative fields. To me there's just something about a law firm or accounting firm such that it makes sense for dress to be more formal. I can't quite put my finger on it; maybe because attention to detail is extremely important and often moreso than creative thinking. Yes, there can and should be some creativity among lawyers (not so sure with accountants), but a lot of the work is somewhat routine (even if each deal is different). It's not everyday that someone's inventing a new poison pill. The professions themselves are also on the more conservative end.

At a tech startup, of course attention to detail in coding is important, but perhaps there's more of an entrepreneurial energy. The culture among high tech workers is probably also a lot less conservative and more entrepreneurial. Perhaps once you get to the big guys like a Microsoft, it is less so, but if you want to stop people from leaving for startups, you at least need to pretend to have some of this culture.

I'm admittedly making some big generalizations, but I do think that a formal dress code would be more beneficial in some professions than others.
 

allysan1027

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As I think about this, it's possible that different work environments benefit from different dress codes. The added level of formality and fastidiousness that comes with a business formal environment can make more sense in a conservative client-oriented field like accounting or law vs. more creative fields. To me there's just something about a law firm or accounting firm such that it makes sense for dress to be more formal. I can't quite put my finger on it; maybe because attention to detail is extremely important and often moreso than creative thinking. Yes, there can and should be some creativity among lawyers (not so sure with accountants), but a lot of the work is somewhat routine (even if each deal is different). It's not everyday that someone's inventing a new poison pill. The professions themselves are also on the more conservative end.

At a tech startup, of course attention to detail in coding is important, but perhaps there's more of an entrepreneurial energy. The culture among high tech workers is probably also a lot less conservative and more entrepreneurial. Perhaps once you get to the big guys like a Microsoft, it is less so, but if you want to stop people from leaving for startups, you at least need to pretend to have some of this culture.

I'm admittedly making some big generalizations, but I do think that a formal dress code would be more beneficial in some professions than others.


I think the idea that a formal dress code would benefit a company is the mentality that only a fashion forum would have, or maybe someone who has watched Suits too many times.

Except at some very high end financial services/law firms, I would assume that most people would not want a formal dress code, nor would they think that somehow it would be beneficial to the company.

Khakis, polos, dress shirts, etc. can be had for cheap. Entry level big 4 accountants (my industry) here in NYC struggle to pay rent and food on their salaries (which are at least average to above average for an entry level position), imagine telling them they had to buy suits, ties, etc.?

Most people who don't frequent SF would rather wear jeans and a t-shirt to work than a suit. That's why casual fridays were instituted right? Making people do something they don't want to (and something that's detrimental to their budget) will not result in a better work environment.
 
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bant

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we are human after all. we are perceptive and we draw conclusions. one's appearance and dress is either a reflection of how they wish to be viewed or (for the less self aware) a voyeuristic glimpse into how they view themselves and their role. truly poor, inappropriate dress either broadcasts "i don't care what you think about me" or worse, "i lack even the most basic level of self-awareness to understand that you will draw conclusions based on how i look"" and either is representative of negative personality traits in a professional environment where teamwork, self-motivation, relationship building etc. are valued.
 

patrickBOOTH

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Khakis, polos, dress shirts, etc. can be had for cheap. Entry level big 4 accountants (my industry) here in NYC struggle to pay rent and food on their salaries (which are at least average to above average for an entry level position), imagine telling them they had to buy suits, ties, etc.?


This doesn't register for me. Surely there were at least two interviews to obtain said job. They should at least have two suits. I don't think requiring formal dress for entry level employees should be a determinant of a dress code. Plus, I can get a suit for $25 at a thrift store if I wanted to be perfunctory.
 

Saturdays

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Why? How do other's dress affect you, or your job?


I love to see people look their best, in my eyes workers of all types in America looked the best during that time period. Its not that I hate the person by the way they look, but that their look completely repels me. When I am in the position to have to sit next to or across someone who does not care about dressing up for work, I usually wince into cringing just from being around them. Sometimes, I will not even turn my body towards the person or make eye contact when speaking with them, i'll stare at something else more pleasant and speak to them, and turn my head or move my eyes towards them every now and then just to make it appear I actually have manners around them. I get along with anyone, but that one thing really offsets me. When someone presents themselves nicely, i feel much more comfortable and its so much easier to glance or look at them while addressing them, and not break the link.
 

Quadcammer

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not everyone considers going to an "upscale" restaurant an occasion worth dressing up for. If the restaurant doesn't have a dress code nor mind that its patrons are wearing flip flops, neither should you.

If I am out doing something where I can be dressed very casually, and afterwards I want to go to a nice place to eat do I need to run home to put on a suit to impress the stranger sitting at the other table?


lol, these are not usually places you just run into after stopping at barnes and noble.

When your reservation is a month out, perhaps you could throw together an appropriate outfit.
 

patrickBOOTH

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I love to see people look their best, in my eyes workers of all types in America looked the best during that time period. Its not that I hate the person by the way they look, but that their look completely repels me. When I am in the position to have to sit next to or across someone who does not care about dressing up for work, I usually wince into cringing just from being around them. Sometimes, I will not even turn my body towards the person or make eye contact when speaking with them, i'll stare at something else more pleasant and speak to them, and turn my head or move my eyes towards them every now and then just to make it appear I actually have manners around them. I get along with anyone, but that one thing really offsets me. When someone presents themselves nicely, i feel much more comfortable and its so much easier to glance or look at them while addressing them, and not break the link.


Doesn't this mean more competition? :devil:
 

allysan1027

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This doesn't register for me. Surely there were at least two interviews to obtain said job. They should at least have two suits. I don't think requiring formal dress for entry level employees should be a determinant of a dress code. Plus, I can get a suit for $25 at a thrift store if I wanted to be perfunctory.


right everybody can just walk right into a thrift store and find a suit that fits them with no problem at all. Nothing about that statement is ridiculous at all.

I only had 1 suit when I interviewed. Sure you have multiple interviews with the same firm, but you interview with different people on different days, or the same day. Either way you can wear the same suit..

the disconnect you have with the way the general population thinks/works is pretty big
 

scotchman

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I completely agree with Saturdays' post. To me, making an effort to look nice shows pride and ambition. If could wear a tailored suit every day of the week I would. When people look more professional, it gives off a very good impression to people visting to office and creates an unstated rule for workers to act more professional as well. Dress code is just another rule in the workplace that has laxed and given way for other rules to be taken advantage of. Image says a lot and people seem to have forgotten that over the past couple decades.

Boardwalk Empire's one of my favorite shows.
 

patrickBOOTH

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right everybody can just walk right into a thrift store and find a suit that fits them with no problem at all. Nothing about that statement is ridiculous at all.

I only had 1 suit when I interviewed. Sure you have multiple interviews with the same firm, but you interview with different people on different days, or the same day. Either way you can wear the same suit..

the disconnect you have with the way the general population thinks/works is pretty big


H&M $100 suit.
 

RDiaz

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I share pB's view on this. While there's a lot of people in suits where I work at, I'm the only one wearing coat and tie in the IT helpdesk department. I just like to dress in coat and tie, and it happens to work in my environment (even though my direct co-workers dress casually) because many of our customers/users dress formally. And I don't think my co-workers should dress in coat and tie, they just have to be comfortable in their clothes.

They do think I dress like an old man, but I couldn't care less.
 

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