Dress Code where you work



No I didn't!

E Wall,

Quite surprised at the turnout. However, I'm surprised about how many comments were aimed at "outside" contacts. Of course you make special pains at appearing professional when dealing with external parties. I was looking for what Randy alluded to in his "tie" post. I know that many of the members and nonmembers are in the group of people who wear the "badge" and I was looking for any reason, other than authority and letting those underlings know who you are, for doing so. I've been there. When I was promoted to a Manager in the 80's, all the other Managers wore slacks and ties. I strutted along with them enjoying the "recognition" that I made the jump from "us" to "them". In the three positions I've had since then, neat was expected, not formal. The quality of my work hasn't been affected one bit by my attire. I believe there is a deep seated belief in those who wear the "badge" when not required to, that they believe that they are the "creme de la creme". A lot has to be with ambition, too. If the CEO or a top level manager dresses a certain way, and your position allows you to emulate there dress, they do it to let them know they're one of them. So, I see it as a desire to distance them selves from their co-workers because of the desire to advance their careers or just to let the others know that they are a cut above. I guess I was just looking for another view point. I bet you don't wear one!:biglaugh: :smokin:


To tie, or not to tie, that is the question

Here is my take. I gave away my suits about three years ago (they must have shrunk). Haven’t bought a replacement yet! In our business (consultants to small and mid-sized manufacturers), we tend to be a bit less formal. Often, I will go on a sales call with a sales person, as the “technical guy”. Usually, it makes more sense if I am dressed more casually. We have found that Quality Managers tend to direct all their attention to me, and not the guy (gal) that is in more formal attire. The “perception” is, that I can relate better to them. If we meet with executive management, the discussion is almost always between the “suit” and the prez.

We often gage who will go visit a particular client, based on the client. One of our client is a rather “salty” individual. A co-worker finds him refreshingly vulgar. Another is a Deacon at his church. Because of my active role in my church, I am the contact. Pairing of cultures is a natural way to build business relationships. Dress, or attire is one way achieving this. Even with Al’s bony, hairy legs, should a kilt be necessary, I’m sure he would pull it off nicely.

I’m not sure what to do with a bag over one’s head.

Dave B (the other Dave)

Ken K

Since I spend 50% of my day on the production floor, a suit and tie or even casual is out of the question. So my choice of attire is "used, but not sloppy". Presentable, but not formal.

As for the bag, I go thru about 20 of them on a bad day. My wife buys the economy package which I keep in my desk drawer. If first impressions mean that much, I want my bag to be presentable.

I tried to talk her into taking a picture of me doing my midnight work that I could share with you, but after hearing my explanation of why and where, it was a no-go. She mumbled something about frightening children...


Super Moderator
It was required at one time that all "Uniformed Captains" (there were 2) of my old PD wear white shirts. As the senior uniformed officers of the department it was felt that it made us look more professional and impressive, and that everybody would know who was in charge. ( Our rank structure had 3 Captains directly below the Chief of Police managing different divisions of the PD).

What the white shirts did was make us targets. You tended to draw the attention, and sometimes the gunfire, of everyone. You could'nt do anything without some bizzy body reporting to the Mayor, or City Council that Captain such-and-so did this or that.

The white shirts also created a type of seperation between us and the "real cops". We didn't need that. We had to be part of the troops so to speak. We didn't need a distinctive form of dress to be identified as a leader. All the people we lead knew who we were and what our authority was.

We eventually went into dark blue shirts like the "regular" guys. There was never an issue as to who was in charge or any confusion associated with the lack of a distinctive "badge".

There is a time and place for being "formal" and a time and place for being "casual", but I don't think it is appropriate that attire be used as a distinction just for show or warm fuzzies.


Not out of the crisis
Super Moderator
Resurrecting this thread because My dress code has varied a lot over the years....

First off, understand that all my jobs have been in manufacturing in the North East. That being said I've dealt with the following dress codes:

- Plant Industrial Engineer. Depended on what I was doing. If I was going to be in the plant all day, clean T-shirt and jeans was fine. If I was going to be in the office most of the day then business casual was the rule. Tie on occasion, like for customer visits or corporate bigwigs coming.
- Corporate QA Engineer - shirt/tie Mon-Thurs. Casual on Fri. In the last 6 months I was there it went to casual every day.
- QA Manager - Business casual most days. Ties for customer visits. NO JEANS*.
- Corporate Project Manager - In the office and on customer visits: Shirt/Tie. In the field and on Fridays: Jeans and collared shirt.
- Plant Operations Manager - Jeans and Collared shirt just about every day.
- QA Director (current): Business Casual, Jeans on Fridays.

* - at this job I got near perfect performance reviews, the only comments being I had little respect for the (undocumented) dress code and did not wear a tie "often enough"
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