Casual Business Jeans
Prior to the 1960’s jeans were considered mostly as a work outfit worn by blue collar workers and people working around their house. Then somewhere around 1965 they became popular with teens as a very casual laid back statement. Then about 25 years ago jeans started to step outside the blue collar environment into corporate America.
Today, while jeans have not taken over corporate America, they are still very much worn at work. Deciding what to wear to work is usually governed by the dress code your company has. Some companies have strict dress codes, meaning no jeans, no sneakers etc. Other companies have what they call “business casual” attire, which may or may not include jeans. Still some companies require strict dress codes Monday through Thursday, and have what they call “casual Fridays.” This may be considered “business casual” or jeans and sneaker casual (Yes, it can get a little confusing).
So what does the employer think about when setting the dress code? About 25 years ago, some employers started to adapt to the concept that a relaxed dress code would make a more relaxed atmosphere, and a more relaxed atmosphere would make more efficient workers. However some employers feel that a casual laid-back dresser might be too laid back and careless about their work. They feel dressing up will cause employees to take their job more seriously. Also, depending on the type of business, they feel that customers or clients may not take a casually dressed office as seriously as an office where everyone is dressed in business attire.
So what do we really want to wear to work? At first thought, most of us would say, “It would be really cool if we could wear jeans to work all the time. After all, I paid just as much for my jeans as I paid for that outfit I wore to work yesterday.” Then again, it depends on what type of business it is and what position you hold. The CEO of the company would probably like to wear jeans to work but he or she knows that a jacket and tie somehow seem to command more attention and respect from other employees as well as from customers or clients.
But even if you are not the CEO you still may want to set your own personal dress code. For example: If the dress code at your office is casual, you might want to show up occasionally in more business like attire. Doing this may show the employer that while you appreciate the relaxed dress code, you do take your job seriously, and its not to much trouble to put a little more effort into your appearance.
Let’s face it, it is very unlikely that corporate America will ever hang up the suit and tie for good. However, jeans have taken their seat in the workplace and it doesn’t look like they’re going to give up that seat any time soon.
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