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Leslie Budd on... office dress codes

Updated Thursday 11th November 2010

Why are dress codes so important in the office environment? Leslie Budd delves into the world of office fashion

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Leslie Budd

Dress codes were once a standardised part of business, but for a number of years we have had dress down days, usually a Friday, but with mixed results and has generated an industry of styling employees to dress casually.  If you go to the average British university, you’ll see that for most of the male academics every day is a dress down day.  Why should dress codes be so important?  Well for some sectors you need protective clothing for health and safety reasons.  If you go to a Japanese owned car factory you'll see that all the employees wear overalls.  For front of house activities, dress codes would appear to be important, but if you treat your employees shabbily, no dress code will redress the impact on customer service with its negative consequences for your reputation and your market.  That’s my view, you can join the debate with the Open University.






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