Wednesday, November 15, 2006

The Clothes Make the Man (or Woman)

Back when I was excited about blogging (which was for like a year and a half up until this summer) I had ideas all the time. Something would happen and I'd think, "I have to blog this later!". For a while I even kept a little notebook with things I wanted to send out into the world. Then this summer I just lost interest. Now I'm back, thanks to NaBloPoMo, and I've got all kinds of ideas again. Except for I forgot about my notebook.

I swear I had the best idea today for an interesting, conversation-starting post. I said to myself, "I should email this to myself so I can blog it later." But alas, I didn't. Now I have nothing.

Well, ok, I have something. Here's a question for you: in a professional working environment, what is acceptable clothing for someone to wear? Have we gotten too lax in the way we dress for work? I work in a professional environment filled with engineers, most of whom have at least Masters degrees. Today in the cafeteria I saw a 20-something girl (a rarity. the girl part, and the 20-something part) wearing a short skirt and hooker boots (boots that hit above the knee). The outfit had the intended effect (all the guys in the cafeteria stopped talking and were staring), but I, as the only other female in there, was appalled. But that's not all. In general people dress really sloppy at work. I see guys with ripped jeans and t-shirts all the time in my office building. I can understand it on the shop floor, but in the engineering building?

So how about you? How do people dress at your work? Do you wish they dressed more professionally?


Blogger M said...

oooooooh man, am I going to get going on this one!
I also work in an environment where engineers run free and undomesticated. In their natural environment, they seem to gravitate to free polo shirts (from customers, suppliers, or company milestones) and ill-fitted (read: pleated) khackis. They also seem to have a tendency towards mass weight gain and hiking their pants up to their nipples, but that is a subject for a different day.
I have started to notice that the women generally dress very well. Most are wearing jackets and dress pants every day. I personally do not. I wear some sort of top (generally cotton; a sweater or a long sleeve shirt) with non-jean pants. I've noticed that the women who tend to move up in the company tend to dress borderline slovenly. Sure, they wear "suits," but they're ill fitting, with shoulder pads and ruffled collars. I don't think anyone has sent out the email to remind people that the seventies were THIRTY years ago.
That being said, there was an incident a few years ago where a summer student (read: 20-something) was ASKED TO GO HOME AND CHANGE by her manager, becuase she was too scantily clad.
My environment is pretty old school. I would like to work in a place where I can wear jeans and running shoes to work, but where people still put some effort into their appearance. Basically I want to have my cake and eat it too. And I want to leave excessively long comments on your blog!! Muahahaha...

9:22 PM  
Anonymous jen said...

well, I get to basically come to work in my PJs. Scrubs. comfortable yes, but its a uniform. I would love to get dressed up with a nice black skirt and a cute top, or my favorite jeans cute top and a great pair of heels! For now, its scrubs, nikes, and hair and makeup done. xoxo

7:00 AM  
Anonymous Janet said...

hahahah the quickest way to make a bunch of engineers stop talking is to have a chick like that walk into a room. ROFLMAO!

When I worked for a 3 star general in Japan, I dressed up every day! I looked good! Now that I work for people I don't care for...I'll wear jeans to work...but not ripped and Eddie Bauer t-shirts and sometimes (often) flip flops LOL!

Why don't I leave this place? Good question...benefits, mostly!

7:07 AM  
Blogger jt said...

I wear the aforementioned polo shirts with jeans and running shoes, unless there is some reason to dress up (e.g. customer presentation). Always have (30+ years as an engineer), always will.

I feel strongly that my professional standing among my peers or in the eyes of my management is based on the work I do rather than my keen fashion sense.

11:52 AM  
Anonymous inzane said...

here's my opinion on it.

9:58 AM  

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