Wednesday, August 02, 2000

Readers weigh in on casual dressing


        Last month, we asked Enquirer readers their thoughts on business casual and what was going on in their work places. Here are a sampling of their responses:

        Casual dress as a reward

The office I work in has tied our dress code to productivity. If a certain level of productivity is met, then we also receive Monday as a casual day. If a second level of productivity is met, we get the entire week casual. (This is new for the summer.)

        Most of us enjoy the change. As we do not see customers/clients regularly, it is of little use to wear formal clothing. I save money from laundry bills as well as from not having to purchase suits. Plus it gives me time in the morning to get dressed.

        While we would don a tie again if our position and income merited it, it is a difficult sell otherwise.

        - Rusty Jessee, 37, Liberty Heights

        Gone too far

I believe that workers have become too casual in their choice of clothes to wear to work. The majority of the people I work with look more like they're dressed to go to a picnic or the grocery store than to work. Even our supervisors wear sandals and, even worse, tennis shoes with dresses!

        - Shauna Peck

        Comfort to comfort others

        On Friday, we can “dress down” and wear jeans, T-shirts, jean shirts and tennis shoes. No torn clothing, no “sweatsuits” and no shorts. We pay $1 to dress down and the $1 goes to a program to help kids (called) Books & Bears. It is worth $1 to wear jeans and get out of those dressy clothes. I work at a public children's services agency in Knox County.

        - Bev Holsinger, 48, Mount Vernon, Ohio

        A sign of the times

The concept of “dress for success” has not become antiquated over the last 10 years; it has simply adapted to the environment. I'm a Web master and I know my boss would rather see me wearing dressier attire. He sees the effectiveness of my casual clothing on our clientele first-hand. The conformist tendencies in this city are incredibly strong and many of my acquaintances simply cease being individuals between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. I'll stick to loud shirts and long hair.

        Beware of declaring a single set of rules for business attire. That concept is the only thing under discussion here which is hopelessly out of fashion.

        - Troy Davis, 27, Norwood


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