|Munck Wilson Mandala Labor and Employment Attorney Audrey Mross quoted in MintLife article|
MintStyle with Rachel Weingarten: Summer Business Style
|July 5, 2012 11:53 pm|
A few weeks ago, I wrote about summer style on a budget and received some feedback that made me pause. Everyone who wrote in seemed to think they had the right idea about what constituted proper office attire during summer months and that everyone else was completely clueless.
Most interesting to me was the fact that everyone who wrote in had completely different theories about not only fashion, but business fashion, in particular. One email extolled the virtues of a past office environment accepting of shorts and anything barring actual beach gear.
Another note railed against the concept of anything more casual than a full-fledged suit and bemoaned the days of official work wardrobes across all industries. Some argued that workplace dress codes were outmoded, while others wished their companies had more clear policies.
Things can get more confusing during summer months when "scantily clad workers in a professional setting can create real dilemmas for employers," says labor and employment attorney Audrey Mross of Munck Wilson Mandala. "A coworker who is revealing a little too much can make colleagues uncomfortable, or even attract attention that forms the basis of a harassment claim."
So, what happens if someone comes into the office and they're inappropriately dressed? Gousman says it's a manager's job to talk to him or her. "If someone came in and had dirty clothes on, you would say something," she adds.
Mross says, "Supervisors are often loath to confront the situation, since it can come off as an attack on personal taste or style. That's where the value of a consistent, basic dress code comes in." If you're unsure of your company's dress code, ask your supervisor, manager, or the person who hired you. If you don't receive a clear answer, try to model your own summer wardrobe on those in positions of authority.
The bottom line is, if you're not sure what to wear to the office during hotter months, check to see if there's an office dress code in place. If you're a freelancer or consultant, spend some time researching the company and their policies and try to dress accordingly when on-site.
©2011 Intuit, Inc.
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