Wearing appropriate business attire:
What is it?
Right now, this very minute, if you’re wearing the appropriate business attire for your job – what is it?
I’m truly inviting comments on this one – I really want to know.
There has been so much change in the office and workplace in the past few years, months, weeks and days … what are we wearing now in sales?
Scattershooting while remembering suits
I remember buying the best three-piece suit I could afford for my first work in sales. When I made good money at it I splurged – and bought a second one!
My, how things have changed …
Today, about 20 custom Italian suits hang in my closet. And that’s what they do – hang.
Then there was the advent of business casual in the late 90s.
At first, Fridays became “business casual” days. This meant you didn’t have to suit up for that one day each week. For example, if you were a guy you were allowed to work in khaki slacks and the comany branded polo shirt.
The business casual mentality gained popularity and slowly, the entire week morphed into one long running business casual day.
I remember emailing back and forth with Jeffrey Gitomer, (The Sales King) discussing appropriate sales/business attire. I surmised that the suits we used to wear for work, we were beginning to wear socially. We were slowly flipping the script on business attire, and gradually replacing our suits at work with what we used to wear out socially.
In my most recent sales position, I wore jeans and Hawaiian (Aloha) shirts to work every day. I like Hawaiian shirts.
Once, while at my Hawaiian shirt job, for a full month I dusted off the shoulders of my suits and wore and tie to work every day.
People wondered what I was up to. They’d come over and ask me if I had a Big Meeting that day, or what? Why was I dressing up for work every day? It made some people feel uneasy.
I just said that’s how I was used to going to work. I just wanted the boys to get some exercise after being cooped up all that time.
So things had loosened up substantially during the span of my sales career.
I’m curious how things are in today’s business culture.
Now, we have ZOOM meetings instead of face to face encounters. That tells me a lot of nice shirts and tops were probably worn, with shorts and sandals underneath the desk.
I’m confident that will change when we resume working conditions in the office. But a lot of changes have taken place during this Covid interruption, and I’m thinking a lot of them will remain, regardless of office business culture.
Those who had to work from home and maintain their sales functions may have begun using ZOOM meetings. Or they may have merely domesticized their workplace telephone and email operations.
PJs – Roaring back in style in the Roaring 20s!
But they were at home. Not in an office with other people. I’m pretty confident a lot of days in March and April may have seen a lot of PJs appearing at hpme office desks.
And working in your PJs is not necessarily a bad thing. Look what it did for Hugh Hefner.
For years, the magazine magnate operated from the round bed in his bedroom, clad in his silk pajamas, all day and night. Meetings, etc. were no different. Hef wore his PJs.
When you’re The Boss you can wear pretty much whatever you want.
So what are you wearing?
What is acceptable attire in your particular business culture situation?
It will be fun to find out!
Who knows – there may be another blog in it – send us your thoughts!