Dress code - how to look good at work?

Service Business

When they see you, that's how they write you - the old Polish proverb has been confirmed in many studies carried out by social psychologists. It has been proven, among others, that the way we are perceived depends in 55% on our appearance, 38% on the way we convey information and only 7% on the content contained in the statement. Appropriate styling can, therefore, make us perceived as extremely competent, experienced, honest and creative.

That is why the way we look at work is so important. Some professions (such as policemen or doctors) have uniforms, the power of which has also been shown in many studies. However, the vast majority of professions are not related to uniforms and the issue of choosing the right outfit for work can be quite difficult (especially among people starting on the labor market).

A few facts about the dress code

A lot of research can be cited as proof of how much the outfit gives. In one of them, carried out in the 1950s, it was proved how the outfit influences the change of attitudes in people. In the first step, a man wearing a flannel shirt and jeans was walking into the street at a red light. Only a few passersby followed in his footsteps. The situation changed when the same man was wearing a suit - in which case his behavior was repeated by 3.5 times more people.

In other research on recruitment, 95% of employers admitted that the appearance of the candidate influences their position in terms of employment. Moreover, 65% of them believe that dress and appearance affect promotion issues.

What is a dress code really?

The concept of dress code refers to written or contractual rules regarding the dress of a given social or professional group. Each company has a dress code - some are more restrictive, others less. It largely depends on the industry, company size, organizational culture and position held. Even our imagination tells us that a woman in a long, colorful, loose skirt, top, wearing many accessories, does not fit the bank's management board. Similarly - a woman in a suit in a subdued color will definitely stand out from the designers working in a small fashion studio.

Work is a place where the employee is required to fit into the existing organizational culture. The right outfit, which is its important element, is an expression of respect for the values ​​of the company, supervisor, colleagues and customers. Appropriate clothing proves our professionalism, influences the trust of our contractors and emphasizes our competences. It determines how we are perceived and what impression we make on others - and it depends only on ourselves.

Basic rules of the dress code

As already mentioned - different professions, companies, positions require different clothes. However, there are some basic rules that should be followed if the company does not have a specific style of dress or if we were not informed about it before the first day of work. Regardless of where we work, our outfit should be neat and well-groomed (i.e. clean, ironed). It is also good to avoid flashiness and exaggeration.

Women should beware of:

  • too short skirts, large necklines, exposed bellies,
  • risky combination of colors,
  • too harsh makeup,
  • too heavy perfume,
  • too flashy manicure,
  • excess jewelry and accessories.

Men, on the other hand, should pay special attention to:

  • choosing the right shoes for the suit (dirty and neglected, whether the sneakers will certainly attract the attention of our surroundings),
  • proper ironing of the outfit,
  • tying a tie,
  • socks matched to the suit.

Corporate dress code

Working in corporations involves practically reducing the freedom of choosing an outfit - the color of a blouse or skirt for women and the color of a tie, shirt and suit for men. In many companies, the so-called casual day (most often it is Friday), i.e. one fixed day a week during which employees can afford more freedom in clothes. This does not mean that you can come to work in a tracksuit or a stretched sweater - you should still have the basic rules of the dress code indicated above.

Dismissal for inappropriate attire?

Can it turn out that if an employee does not comply with the dress code in a given company, the employer has the right to dismiss him? Pursuant to the judgment of the Supreme Court of 25 January 2005 (syng. I PK 153/04), he may do so if his subordinate through his behavior (including clothes) exposed him to losses or threatened his interests. It is best when the dress code in force in a given workplace will be written, for example, in the company's regulations. There are then clearly defined guidelines that we are obliged to follow, and breaking them may have specific consequences. When taking up a job in a given organization, in order to avoid misunderstandings and problems, it is worth asking about the applicable attire.