Finding the proper dress for work can always be a little challenging, especially when you’re first beginning at the company. Most companies have a dress code but those dress codes can sometimes lack as far as information goes that points to specific questions you may have. Here’s a little cheat sheet to help you figure out what you should wear to work!
- Just Ask
Sometimes, the simplest thing you can do is just ask what the dress code is. It’s better to ask than be found out of dress code and spoken to about it. Generally, dress codes are covered in the first day procedures at a new position. When they’re not, just take a simple look around and, if you’re still unsure, just ask someone within a management position. You’ll surely find the answer that you’re looking for.
- Business Formal
This is the least flexible category for dress codes. Usually, you will find the upper echelons of the company in business formal or the high-level executives. Women should wear a pantsuit or mid-length skirt suit, black or neutral closed-toe shoes, and a blouse that’s more conservative. You do have a little wiggle room as far as color, cut, and style of the blouse goes. Men should wear a suit and tie (non-optional) and well-polished professional shoes. For both sexes, hair should always be kept neat and, for women, makeup should be simple.
- Professional Attire
Professional attire grants a little more leniency for a dress code. Men should stick with the tried and true dress pants/button-down shirt combination but they could add a sweater or sport coat in place of a suit jacket. For women, the pantsuit or mid-length skirt suit is out but they should still keep a rather conservative dress, blouse, or sweater on hand in mind when dressing. This is where women can add a little sparkle in terms of jewelry and makeup.
- Corporate Casual
Corporate casual is also known as “business casual.” Take a deep breath and start putting those suits and conservative blouses away. Women can wear short-sleeved and sleeveless tops at this point so long as they are of an appropriate fabric (nothing sheer). The skirts women may choose to wear can be just above the knee at this point and a printed blouse will add a little bit of fun to your office wardrobe. Men can bust out the khakis they’ve been longing to wear, just as long as the shirt the pick is tucked in. Whatever shirt is selected should still have a color but a dark or neutral polo can stand in place of the button-down.
Regardless of your company’s dress code, simply ask if you’re still unsure. That will be the quickest way to retrieve the answer and relieve you of any stress about how you dress!