Okay, I admit it.
Back in the day, when I was a worker bee in the corporate arena, one of my favorite days, (other than pay day) was casual dress day.
Probably because most of my work experience was in very “professional” type environments, these days were as rare as steak.
In fact, if I can recall correctly, the only time we got them was if we had filing and purging projects around the office, or weekend work, or were being rewarded for reaching a departmental goal.
Casual attire usually accompanied a more lax, laid back attitude, and less formality in terms of interaction. We felt less inhibited, freer to express our personalities through our attire, and just down-right groovy.
Who wouldn’t love it?
Now, don’t get me wrong; I dig dressing up in sexy stilettos and nylons, and wearing tailored suits, (that show off my curvaceous legs), but every now in then, jeans can bring real joy too.
Not to mention, casual days have also been said to improve overall office morale.
But, just like many good things in life, it only takes a few “bad apples” to spoil it for the rest of the bunch.
What started out as a dream slowly progressed into a nightmare.
Particularly when casual days coincided with warm summer weather.
Where do I begin…?
We had chicks coming into the office wearing tops that resembled something from Victoria’s Secrets. Folks in need of serious pedicures were wearing beach sandals and straw hats. Stuff too tight. Stuff too loose. Too much polyester. Too little discretion. What once had the appearance of a place of work began to look like try-outs for a circus act or a bad reality show! I kid you not.
So consider this article like a “public service message” and please heed the following.
1. “Casual” is not the same as careless. Even on casual days, clothes should be clean, neat and appropriate.
2. Ladies, just because something comes in your size does not mean that you should wear it. Spandex is not your friend.
3. Keep jewelry and make-up to a minimum.
4. Fellas, Hawaiian, buttoned-down, loud colored shirts only work if you’re starring on Miami Vice, or are actually in Hawaii.
5. If the chatter ceases when you approach the water cooler, you can assume that your wardrobe probably was the topic of conversation. Act accordingly.
Follow these five tips and consult your corporate policy to “dress for success” even on casual workdays.
This is a guest post by Jennifer Brown Banks, a veteran freelance writer and pro blogger. She holds a B.A. in Business Management. Visit her site @ http://penandprosper.blogspot.com/