If you’re the HR manager of an organization and notice that your employees seem to bend the rules around business casual dress code policy, then it’s important to lay down some rules so that professionalism is mainained at all times within the office and when meeting with clients.
Especially with summer here, if you’re looking to establish a dress code policy for business casual attire for women or men in the workplace, this is a good time to start.
As an article in Cincinatti.com suggests, “Casual dress leads to casual behavior and studies show that a dress down policy can often lead to poor behavior: increased foul language, increased tardiness, increased sexual harassment and decreased productivity.”
If you want to curb the above behaviour before it starts at your organization, here are some business casual dress code rules worth sharing with your employees:
Tattoos. Yes, they are becoming more acceptable and the younger employees are more willing to expose their tattoos. Realize, however, that prejudices do exist, especially with people in the more mature generations. Do yourself a favor and cover tattoos up at work.
Cleavage. Young women are inundated with countless examples of inappropriate dress in the media. If you can see your cleavage, so can everyone else. Your meetings may last longer, but studies show you will not be as successful. Don’t de-value what you bring to the table. Button up just a smidge.
Bra straps. Don’t expose them at work. It is that simple.
Skirt length. If, when sitting, your skirt is more than 4 inches above your knee, it is too short. Do you want your colleagues to be listening to you or having their eyes wander? Save the shorter skirts for after hours.
Shoes. Flip-flops are not shoes and are not meant to be worn at work. A peep-toe is acceptable, but any shoe that can be worn to the beach or pool cannot be worn to work. Also, sneakers are not acceptable. If you can walk the dog in it, wear it to the gym or play a sport in it, you shouldn’t wear it to work.
Cargo pants. A good rule to live by is that if your shorts, skirts or pants have the word “cargo” before it, don’t wear them to work.
You might feel that you come off as a bit strict or old-fashioned when establishing a business casual dress code policy at work, however in the long-run it’s a win-win for your organization and your employees. With a clear outline your people are no longer in the dark as to what’s acceptable and what’s not, and they’ll thank you for that, even if they don’t verbally say it.