Fashion freedom is something we salute—especially in the normally colorless cubicles of office land, where any hint of self-expression is a welcome development.
In fact, one thing I loved about my earlier career in rock & roll was that everyone could dress any way they wanted. (If it weren't for a medical condition I had—needing to eat—I'd still be there.)
But in the 21st century workplace, with the increase in Generation Y employees, has the pendulum suddenly swung too far the other way?
Yes, according to a Bloomberg BusinessWeek article 'The Tragic Decline in Business Casual' , which would have us believe that standards for dress have recently sunk to new lows in corporate America.
Clinton Kelly, the co-host of The Learning Channel's What Not to Wear, is quoted as saying:
'Kids coming out of college are watching Lady Gaga on YouTube.
They don't understand that Lady Gaga is selling albums and they're working in accounting. A meat dress just doesn't fly at the office.'
I know what you're thinking: picky, picky. But even if your finance department desperately needs some glimmer of life, some shred of personality, is there no line to cross? Is any clothing permissible as long as it doesn't attract flies? (Or maybe bugs are okay, as long as you don't work in a restaurant or hospital?)
After extensive polling of my colleagues, I've learned I'm not the only one who works in the office barefoot and in shorts (along with an office mate who prances around nude wearing just a collar).
I'm sure you can relate to this if you too work out of your home, with your cat in your lap. But if that's the case and you're reading—in that same article—that office employees are now wearing 'hooker earrings' and 'bondage collars' aren't you thinking it might be time to return to the corporate life?