The recent burst of telecommuting is damaging fashion sense, according to a number of fashion pundits. They blame the ability to work from home for the way that both men and women have been letting their clothing standards drop.
Some supermarkets have taken to banning customers in pyjamas from shopping because it can offend. They claim that it’s because customers have got used to shopping online in their pjs and now expect to be able to do the same in person.
It’s just one sign that business-casual is devolving into ‘anything goes’ but for those who hope to travel up the career ladder it’s a dangerous path. Companies have taken complex dress codes and turned them into ‘use your best judgement’ but for savvy employees, owning a good pair of trousers or a skirt, a smart shirt and a decent pair of shoes is still the minimum requirement. If your CEO suddenly turns up in your home town and the company want you to drop off some papers or take him or her a memory stick, then you need to look right. And for those who work in ‘back offices’ it may be tempting to wear shorts, flip-flops and casual teeshirts but if you tend to look sloppy and unprofessional, you may fail to win promotion.
Find a middle path by wearing polo-shirts instead of T-shirts, lightweight casual trousers instead of shorts and simple pumps or even this year’s fashion winner, high-top trainers, instead of flip-flops.