The last couple of decades have seen a tremendous change in how workplaces function. With an increase in the amount of female participation and greater computerisation in the workforce, very few aspects of the work life have remained unhindered. As is obvious from all of this, there has also been a notable change in the way people dress for work.
Workplaces which were earlier very strict about formal attire are now approaching a more liberal outlook. While this is indeed a welcome change, the fact is that there are some etiquettes (either documented or unlaid) that one must follow while turning up for work.
This is true irrespective of the organisation you work for or your role. This article talks about why it is important to maintain a proper dress code at work and speaks about 5 do and don'ts.
Importance Of A Dress Code
Your office is the place you spend most of your working hours and in order to ensure maximal performance, it is important that you are comfortable. However, it is equally important to understand that when you turn up to work, you are actually the face of your organisation to the outside world.
What you wear and how you present yourself speaks more about your organisation than it does about you. By being well dressed, you show that you are serious about what you are doing. This ensures that people around you do not take you for granted. If every employee of an organisation adheres to the dress code, matters tend to get more professional which in turn paves the way for better team productivity.
While talking about the importance of the dress code, it is necessary to understand that there is no universal work dress code. The dress code of an organisation may differ depending on the sector the company focuses on, the geographical location and the cultural and ethnic specialisations of the place.
The following points illustrate what you can wear to the office and what you cannot.
• Tee Shirt
This is one of the most common clothing choices for most people. Not only are tee shirts easy to maintain, they look good and are decent as well. However, while opting for tee shirts, make sure that you go for collared ones. Polo neck tees are also encouraged.
In the case of women, it is a good idea to keep away from tee shirts that are sleeveless or transparent in nature. Try to keep things sober and keep away from fluorescent shades. It is okay for your tee shirt to be stripped or have moderate prints if you do not want to wear single-coloured ones.
These days, jeans are accepted as workplace attire in most offices. Make sure that the jeans that you are wearing do not rest anywhere above your ankle. Wearing denim shorts or capris is strictly discouraged. Also, try to avoid wearing stoned or torn jeans. There might be situations where the same looks unprofessional.
Irrespective of your sex, make sure that you do not wear low-waist jeans and your upper wear overlaps your jeans by at least a couple of inches. In the case of women, wearing coloured or printed jeans is acceptable. However, it is advisable to stick to sober shades.
• Formal Trousers
This is something that is well accepted for both men and women. Formal trousers are available in a wide variety of colours and all of it falls in the accepted dress code of most organisations. However, make sure that you do not wear pants where the bottom is too narrow and tight fitting.
As is the case with jeans, make sure that your trousers reach all the way down to your ankle; anything less than that is not acceptable in the corporate scene.
If you are choosing to wear shirts to the office, it is a good idea to have them tucked in. Collared shirts (either Chinese collar or others) are well accepted in the workplace. Make a conscious effort to ensure that under no circumstance should you have more than one button open.
• Dresses And Skirts
It is the influence of the Western world and the convenience of it all that is making a growing number of women opt for dresses and skirts as office wear. Dressing up in this type of attire makes one look professional. Make sure that your skirt is not too tight. Also, ensure that the same is not too short.
In case your skirt or dress is more than 4 inches above your knee, make sure that you team up the same with nude stockings. Understand that the office is not the best place for you to show off your flawless legs.
For women, this is one of the most decent and elegant office wear options. You may choose to team it up with either jeans or leggings. Some women prefer to carry a veil or dupatta with the outfit and that is something that is totally acceptable.
The only aspect of the kurti that you must be aware of while using the same as an office wear is that the slits on the sides should not be too high. That might make you look indecent and unprofessional at work.
Footwear comprises an essential element of the work dress code for both men and women. Men are advised to wear shoes. The shoes may either be formal or casual, but under no circumstance should you wear open sandals. Similar rules apply to women wherein they are encouraged to keep away from glittery footwear.
As a gesture of courtesy towards your fellow colleagues, make sure that you do not indulge in footwear that makes a lot of noise when you walk about. Also, make it a practise to avoid removing your footwear in the office premises.