Now more of us are working from home, and so many of our meetings are online, this has given us a new dilemma with our work wardrobes. How formally should we be dressed?
In this blog I am going to talk about different perceptions of clothes.
If you are in a managerial position or you lead a team then you would be advised to wear a jacket or similar for online meetings. It’s up to you to lead by example and influence how others in your team should dress.
Now there is a caveat with this as some industries have a more relaxed culture to their dress code. However, as the boss, manager or leader of a team, your clothes should reflect your authority. This does not mean to say that you have a dictatorial style of leadership. It just helps to show you are in charge.
Always ensure that your shoulders are covered. This goes for men and women alike. It’s not appropriate in a business environment for you to show bare shoulders, in the same way that it’s not appropriate for a man to show a hairy chest. It’s just not appropriate for the workplace and can be seen as unprofessional and offensive.
Think of your work wardrobe in the same way as you would think about going out to a cafe or a restaurant. I am sure many of you would be offended if a man was sitting in the cafe bare-chested when everyone else was dressed normally. And hold on ladies, we’re not talking about the male models we see in adverts. (This thought might make us smile, however, many of us would find it a distraction.) I’m sure the men would feel just as uncomfortable if there was a lady sitting in her bra in the cafe or restaurant. Again not a model, just an everyday person. It’s just not considered acceptable in our culture to dress like this and we should think about this in our work from home environment too.
Don’t get me wrong. I am definitely not about getting everyone to wear exactly the same uniform or have no freedom of expression. It’s all about the environment you’re in. In your own home, and on your own time, it’s up to you to decide how you dress. However, keep your holiday casual wear for your holidays, not for your online meetings.
Other people’s perceptions
Other people’s perceptions of you will be completely different if they see you in meetings having not bothered with personal presentation. They may well wonder how much effort you have put into your work, if you couldn’t be bothered to brush your hair or put on clean, uncrumpled clothes. Ask yourself what would your impression be of someone dressed like this that you hadn’t met before?
Be memorable – for the right reasons
Think about making yourself memorable for the right reasons. Dress you, not someone else. Build a colourful and stylish wardrobe of clothes that say who you are without you having to speak.
Don’t wear a uniform. Instead, learn to develop your own personal style, This will help you to buy less and have a more sustainable wardrobe.
If your wardrobe is out of control or just needs a new look, let’s have a discovery call to see how I can help you take back control of your wardrobe.