Companies with strict dress codes

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. By using our website you consent to all cookies in accordance with our updated Cookie Notice. For centuries, and all around the globe, strict laws have governed what people wear.

From caliphates to communist republics and even in the democratic West, a moral war is being waged on our wardrobes, one that rages on today. So, in the spirit of sartorial solidarity, we take a look at five nations where personal style and political style are one and the same. Hair should be kept cm in length and be trimmed every 15 days, reports had it. Meanwhile, women caught wearing trousers were once rumoured to be punished with forced labour and fines, according to reports. North Korea is not the only country where men wear the trousers: in Sudan inthere was outrage as nine women faced 40 lashes for the crime of wearing western-style slacks.

Muslim women are required to wear a niqab and long black cloak called an abaya, while foreign women can get away with a long coat and bare head, if they dare. Aimed at everything from motorcycle helmets to hoods and balaclavas, the law has been widely criticized as discriminatory towards Muslim women, who wear burqas and niqabs for religious reasons.

Part of a new anti-pornography bill, the law has led to several incidents of women being harassed and assaulted in the streets.

Following mass protests in the streets of Kampala, the prime minister has announced he will review the law. Have you read? What are your basic freedoms? World Economic Forum articles may be republished in accordance with our Terms of Use. The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum.

I accept. World vs Virus Podcast. Listen now on Spotify. Most Popular.Many employers require their employees to follow a dress code.

Employers regulate clothing, piercings, tattoos, makeup, nails, hair, and more. For the most part these dress codes are legal as long as they are not discriminatory. For example, men and women can have different dress codes if the dress codes do not put an unfair burden on one gender. However, even if a dress code is discriminatory, an employer does not need to make exceptions for certain employees if doing so would place an undue burden on the employer.

For example, if someone's religion said they could not wear pants but they worked at a factory that required them to wear pants a court would likely side with the employer as the pants are for the employee's safety. To learn more about your rights with respect to dress codes and grooming, read below:.

My employer is telling me how to dress, but no one else is forced to dress that way, is that legal? My employer has dress codes for women, but not for men, is that legal? My boss requires me to wear makeup, and seems to have a much more different dress code for women than for men, is this legal?

My boss allows women to wear their hair long, but not men, is that legal? Can a casino, or other employer make me wear a "revealing" or "sexual" uniform? Is my employer allowed to tell me to maintain a certain weight in order to fit into a certain size uniform?

Is my employer allowed to deduct the cost of my required uniform from my paycheck? Is my employer allowed to require me to shave my beard? Is my boss allowed to tell me to cover my tattoos and piercings? Can my employer still tell me what to wear if my religion conflicts with my employer's dress code?

Does my employer, or prospective employer, have a responsibility to provide me with a dress code accommodation, when they reasonably know I need one, even if I did not ask for one? Can my employer ban me from wearing union buttons or t-shirts with the union logo? I feel that my employer's dress code has violated my privacy rights or might be discriminatory.

companies with strict dress codes

What can I do? In general, employers are allowed to regulate their employees' appearance, as long as they do not end up discriminating against certain employees. In today's work world, more employers are requiring more formal attire. While in the last decade there was a trend for employers to be more laid back, and they allowed such things as "casual Friday," in the last three to four years, some employers are taking a step back towards requiring a more formal way of dressing.

Many employers feel that more formal attire means more productive employees. An employer generally cannot single you out or discriminate against you. Dress code policies must target all employees, not just you.Earlier this month, Newsweek employees got a surprise when they officially joined their new parent company, International Business Times : The IBT Employee Handbook, complete with an aggressive corporate dress code. These journalists — a group normally known for their coffee-stained shirts, and schlubby personal style — were now prohibited from wearing jeans, sneakers, sandals, flip-flops, t-shirts, halter tops, camisoles, tank tops, baseball caps, shorts, or "anything else that is deemed unprofessional or excessively distracting.

In addition, "shaggy, messy, and neglected hair is not permissible regardless of length," and all tresses must be "of natural color.

The handbook, which was leaked to Politico last weekwas not a hit with the media, which quickly latched on to IBT 's old-school helicopter management style. The New York Post called it an "outdated dress code for a new media company.

What Does Your Office Dress Code Say About Your Brand?

And it's true: In the last decade, office dress has moved past a conservative Wall Street vibe, and toward a Silicon Valley, anything-goes aesthetic.

The '80s was the era of power suits; this is the age of Mark Zuckerberg's hoodie. That said, the corporate world is still filled with examples of fastidious dress codes — some conservative and outdated, some just kind of weird. Here are three:. Walt Disney Walt Disney has long had one of the strictest dress codes in corporate America. When Disneyland opened inMr.

Disney himself banned male employees from having facial hair. It wasn't until that men were allowed to start sporting mustaches, and in beards and goatees got the green light, too, as long as they were clipped to less than a quarter of an inch.

companies with strict dress codes

But the company's strict "style guide" for retail employees remains. If you're going to wear a denim shirt, for example, you must pop the collar and unbutton the top three buttons. If a woven shirt under a sweater is more your look, the sleeve should be cuffed at half an inch and slightly visible. Also, "flip-flops look great with any look," and shirts should get an "easy side-tuck" or and "easy front-tuck. Beyond the basic "no short skirts" policy for women, the handbook was very specific about the importance of wearing makeup.

Way to spell it out. Carmel Lobello. It's all fun and games until someone forgets to pop his collar. Here are three: Walt Disney Walt Disney has long had one of the strictest dress codes in corporate America.

Soul patches, meanwhile, are still prohibited.Stars Insider. USPS looking into Wisconsin absentee ballot issues. Navy Commander: Virus-struck crew 'struggling'. Simple trick to find the best car insurance rates. Ad Microsoft. Experts: Buy these stocks before it's too late. This is the longest balance transfer we've seen. Full screen. Are dress codes still relevant? Here are the pros and cons Work dress codes have been a hot topic as of late, with debates cropping up around everything from gender discrimination to the modernization of business.

Virgin Atlantic and Goldman Sachs are just two of the plethora of companies who have announced that they will relax their strict employee dress codes, while newer companies like Apple and Facebook introduce the benefits of casual work wear.

But is there still value to having a sartorial code of professionalism? Click through to see the pros and cons.

Why do Companies have Dress Codes?

Microsoft may earn an Affiliate Commission if you purchase something through recommended links in this article. Virgin Atlantic The airline has loosened its dress code for women flight attendants—known for their red skirt suits, red pumps, and red lipstick—allowing them to now wear pants and skip the makeup. Slideshow continues on the next slide. Clearly, having relaxed dress codes have their appeal. The company is known for its carefree approach to dress codes, and the freedom of expression that Apple offers its employees seems to have translated into their innovation and creativity at work.

Dress codes often push sexist gender notions Many companies are coming under fire for, however legally, requiring their female employees to wear heels, skirts, makeup, and so forth while also restricting men from wearing anything other than pants, closed-toe shoes, and short haircuts.

Strict attire could actually mean losing business! Loosening the grip shows trust Many occupational health experts argue that employers should trust their employees enough to let them dress how they please, and that specifying what employees must wear comes off as patronizing. Valuing appearance over work Many say that staff should be judged based on the quality of the work they do, rather than how good they look doing it. An added cost for employees Work dress codes usually entail employees having two separate wardrobes, one for work and one for leisure, which can be a burden.

Employees could break from their everyday hoodies and try out something a little more professional-looking. Potential challenge for people with disabilities and illnesses Chronic illness and disability, both hidden and visible, may struggle with a strict dress code, but may not feel confident in asking for exemption from the dress code. Dress codes can make things quite boring Making everyone dress the same can add a certain dullness to the day and to the work environment, and when creativity is stifled right at the beginning of your morning, it can make it more difficult to draw out creativity later on.

Take, for example, Starbucks employees. The company has a strict set of rules when it comes to the apron, including keeping it wrinkle- and stain-free. Dress codes can level the playing field If done correctly and with a gender-neutral approach, dress codes can diminish or eliminate the display of social status, authority, and significance of the various hierarchies of employees.Today, 50 percent of managers say employees dress less formal than they did five years ago.

And 58 percent of employees say they would prefer to work at a company that has a business casual, casual, or no dress code. Some professionals are still split on the topic of dress code. Some question the seriousness, professionalism, and productivity of companies with a flexible dress code. Others question the culture, relevance, innovation, and management of companies with a strict dress code. People wearing suits and more formal attire seem to return in tougher economic times," says Britton.

If there are more jobs than there are people, what are you as an employer doing to attract talent to your company? You do the things employees want: They want money and they want perks such as a more casual dress code. Right now, companies are having to be competitive for talent. As the demand for Millennial talent grows and more Millennials step into decision-making roles, expect the trend towards more casual to grow.

Forty percent of Millennials say their business inspiration is Mark Zuckerberg. With that much Millennial attention on the founder of Facebook, Zuckerberg's choices to wear a hoodie to meet investors and to wear the same gray t-shirt and jeans everyday in order to be more productive have influenced the next generation of professionals' views of appropriate workplace dress. In addition, by at least half of U. People dressing formally while working independently is unlikely.

Employers' dress policies are being held accountable by the desire and possibility of Millennials working for themselves where they could dress as they wish. However, when we're at the office, we do not have many clients visiting as we go to them more than they come to us and our office had become more casual over the years as our partners relaxed enforcement of the business casual dress code," said Williams. Smart casual can be considered a combination of casual, business casual, and business dress codes.

Formal and casual clothing pieces can be mixed and matched to combine into a "smart" ensemble. It's considered neat, conventional, and professional yet relatively informal.

3 Tips for Avoiding Trouble with Company Dress Codes

The best of all the dress code worlds. The advantage is that smart casual is ambiguous which caters to Millennials desire for flexible dress and to other generations desire to keep it professional.

The disadvantage is that smart casual is ambiguous and might require more guidelines than other dress policies. I followed up with Williams a few months later to see how the transition to smart casual went. Below is her response. Jeans shouldn't have holes and should be more fitted and put together. No tennis shoes or flip flops. More tailored outfits regardless of the fabric involved. Enforcing the new code for those people was initially a challenge but given the lenient boundaries of the new code, most people adapted nicely.

Given that we are a professional services firm, we applied some boundaries to that but overall employees are empowered to wear what works for them to get them through the work day and into the evening.

Another benefit has been with recruiting. It is a selling point to potential new hires that we have smart casual dress in the office. Overall I think we found a nice balance between 'looking the part' and allowing people to dress comfortably and appropriately for the office. Revisit your company dress code to ensure it is positioning you for next generation growth and success.

Chances are if you work in an office today, your attire is more casual than ever before. Competitive job market. Since more than half of job seekers said a company's dress code is either very important or moderately important when it comes to accepting a job offer, companies are using flexible dress codes as a way to attract talent Rise of remote working.Making sure you follow the dress code guidelines can be annoying. If it ever happens that a client is visiting your company, you really want that client to have a good impression of your company.

On the contrary, if there were no dress code, the client may be taken aback by the relaxed atmosphere at the company. A bad impression can be detrimental to your business relationship. Although you might find the dress code annoying, the fact that everyone must be properly groomed is a larger benefit to the working environment than you think. Depending on the size of your office, you might find yourself with hundreds of people in the same room.

Personal hygiene is extremely important in such environments. If personal hygiene is not enforced, a working environment can get toxic quite fast. Different people have different views on what good hygiene entails. Dress code guidelines are necessary in order to regulate adequate personal hygiene. A large benefit of school uniforms is the fact that well-off children cannot show off their new clothes and accessories as much.

But work is not like school, so arguing that a dress code creates equality under employees is debatable. It is unlikely that the salaries of people working in the same team vary significantly. However, if everyone wears similar clothing, and the clothing is different to what employees would wear outside of work, a dress code can create a sense of a bond between employees. If everyone wears the same clothing, there is a strong sense of a team. Have you ever dressed up before going out at night?

companies with strict dress codes

When you wake up in the morning, and put on the formal clothing required for your job, you feel formal as well. And when you feel formal, you tend to act more formal too. So a dress code at work can make the work environment more professional — because people feel more professional. However, certain environments are not suited that well for dess codes, for instance tech teams often insist on more casual dress codes. Again, using professionalism as a reason to make the case for a dress code at work can be debated.

The workplace can be professional without a strict dress code too. Proper attire is certainly not the only factor for a professional environment. Company culture, employee motivation or well-managed operations are a few examples of the many factors which determine professionalism at the workplace.

A proper dress code nonetheless plays a role though. Summing up, there are a couple of things which make it important to have a dress code at the workplace. Remember that dress codes do not necessarily have to mean suit and tie, a more informal dress code could work as well. Like this article? Get more delivered directly into your inbox! Sign up for our newsletter here:. Email address:.Janhvi Bhojwani. Many employers are introducing more flexible dress codes and the trend may be tied to the rise of younger workers.

This week, Wall Street titan Goldman Sachs announced it's relaxing its dress code. In an attempt to shift toward a workplace that has "a more casual environment," the company said its new policy would allow for more "flexible" attire, according to an internal note issued Tuesday. The firm doesn't specify what's allowed, but the memo says "casual dress is not appropriate every day and for every interaction.

All of us know what is and is not appropriate for the workplace. The move may not be surprising, given that companies like Goldman Sachs are competing for talented workers with Google, Facebook and other firms in Silicon Valley, the home of hoodies and other forms of casual clothing. Just last week, Virgin Atlantic also relaxed its dress code.

The company confirmed that it is no longer forcing female flight attendants to wear makeup. And they can now wear pants. Previously, female flight attendants could only wear pants if they made a special request.

The shift could be seen as a way to address scrutiny for how female employees are treated in the MeToo era. Mark Anderson, Virgin Atlantic's executive vice president of customer, said the changes followed a company survey of employee preferences. The dress code changes will give female flight attendants "an increased level of comfort" and "more choice" for them to express individuality, he said.

Last month, Target also made changes to its dress code, allowing employees to wear bluejeans. While the company has allowed jeans on holidays and weekends, now all employees are welcome to wear them any day they work. More companies are shifting toward a less formal dress code, according to the Society for Human Resource Management. As many as half of firms surveyed by the group said they allow casual dress every day.

That's up six percentage points from and 18 percentage points since And with more young people entering the workforce, workplace habits are continuing to evolve to fit the culture of younger generations who prefer more casual attire. Generation Z and millennials make up 40 percent percent of the workforce, according to the Pew Research Center.

Jamie Notter, a workplace culture expert, says the casual dress code trend has been around since millennials entered the workforce 10 to 15 years ago. It reflects companies' increased focus "on employees rather than management," he says. Accessibility links Skip to main content Keyboard shortcuts for audio player.

NPR Shop. The trend may be tied to the rise of younger workers.


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