Many work places are adopting a more relaxed dress code policy. However, this does not always yield positive results.
Case in point: many of my former co-workers wore jeans every day. Some even wore t-shirts with sayings such as “Go Cards!” on the front. Did they forget that we work at a college? How will people be able to tell the difference between students and staff?
More recently, I noticed that someone wore shorts, yes, shorts, in the office! We are not at the beach, people! This is a professional environment and needs to be treated as such.
And then there are some other disturbing trends. One that comes to mind is the tank top with bra straps showing. Seriously? First of all, how can this possibly be comfortable? Second, ladies, your underwear is showing. Not very classy.
Men are no exception. For some reason, many cannot seem to find pants that fit. I cannot tell you how many people I have seen waddling around with their pants around their knees. How do they ever get to class on time?
My parents always taught me the importance of dressing professionally daily. My mom is a teacher. Can you imagine what would happen if she showed up in a tube top and short shorts? My dad works for the Illinois State Police. How would he be able to install all of the necessary equipment in a trooper’s car if his pants were pulled down? We expect certain people to dress a certain way. But, when it comes to how we look, we tend to not even try.
I will never under any circumstances understand the “pajamas as clothes” idea. They are called “pajamas” for a reason. This type of clothing is meant to be slept in, not attend school, go shopping or see a movie in.
One of my previous employers was very militant about the dress code. Professional attire had to be worn at all times. You could not have dress pants that looked like jeans. You could not have any bedazzlements on your pants. Your tops were not to have any pictures or sayings. This includes the tiny logo of some designers, such as Tommy Hilfiger, that sometimes appear on the front. And then there were the shoes. This company actually e-mailed a list of all the types of shoes that were and were not acceptable to wear with photos of each.
I am by no means trying to be a clothes nazi. I simply wish that people would take pride in looking as if they actually care about their job instead of looking like they are ready for Happy Hour. I will break down and wear jeans on Fridays, but, I still wear a business appropriate top.
I try to put myself in the position of the student. If I were to come into the college with a question and the person serving me was wearing the same “relaxed” type of clothing that I was, this would make me nervous. I would be thinking, “Does this person really know what he/she is talking about?”
Please understand that I am not trying to judge people by what they wear. I do not believe that clothes show someone’s intelligence or financial standing. However, I do feel that how one dresses reflects how one feels. When we are sick, we don’t style our hair and typically, just stay in our pajamas. But, when we go out on the town, we dress to the nines.
There should be some sort of middle ground for work place attire. While you are not going to the prom, you want to reflect that you are a competent, confident person who can handle the job that he/she has been given. I don’t believe that shorts and flip-flops are the best way to achieve this goal.