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Looking Good vs. Feeling Good, Part I

Anyone over 35 probably remembers the Fernando Lamas character that actor Billy Crystal portrayed on the t.v. show, Saturday Night Live. The character’s key phrase at all times was..”It’s better to look good, than to feel good.”

The topic I’m addressing today.. is work attire, clothes for the OFFICE… which is a very touchy – icky subject that will bring out the best of MEAN in everyone. (Anyone who says they have never judged someone’s work attire may, in fact, be the world’s biggest fibber.)

Of course, business attire is driven by several factors:

1. Your workplace could have a dresscode

2. The climate of the city and/or of the company where you work

3. Age of the majority of workers

4. Type of work

I mention this because.. well, I wanted to wear a nice new pair of shoes (espadrilles) to work. They are trendy now.. and usually worn without pantyhose or any kind of sock. HA! Not only am I still recovering from this episode (see my earlier blog about the conference I attended) but were they really appropriate for work?

Yes.. of course they were. What wasn’t appropriate (or actually was more humourous) was the way I was limping in agony at the end of the day of wearing new shoes. BUT.. man, did they LOOK good…

I don’t consider myself a conservative..but I do take issues with young ladies dressing like they are at the BEACH. Tank tops and flip-flops are my peeve in the workplace. These people are not working a sno-cone stand at Atlantic City!!!

For God’s sake.. when did Corporate America approve the flip-flop as a work shoe? And, older working women know how hard it has been to even be taken seriously as an admin, much less an astute business partner in the workplace. Along comes Ms. White blouse with no camisole! showing the company her assets.

Frankly, if the worker is trying to find a mate.. I say, do it on your own time… trolling at the office is a no -no. (And an entirely different topic!)

No. It’s not jealousy.

Listen, I’ve been there. Once (not terribly long ago), I was a young 20-something cute, SLENDER employee. I wore more fitted clothes then, yet they COVERED my body. So I’ve had my heyday.. it’s not about being jealous of younger workers. I think it’s more of a wishing they had some self-respect and DIGNITY about what they show up wearing at work.

Of course, if you work at a resort.. duh! your attire may be more casual. If you work for a top 100 law firm? on Wall Street? I suspect the work dress code is more formal and probably enforced. I think it sends a mixed messages to our school-age children that we set strict rules in school but they come to see Mom or Dad at the office and one of the folks at the office is wearing pants that deliberately show their thong. AIYEEE!

Ok.. enough ranting.. but I hope my point is taken in context. Nothing wrong with being comfortable (note, I’m wearing flats the rest of this week.. ), but how about upper management pulling these folks aside in private and asking them to bring their career wardrobe up a notch… If you are a brave, feisty, crusty old-time admin.. please .. put the scare in these young ones, if you haven’t already. They may not care. They may complain. Yet, I know a few of my peers out there who do not worry about stating their mind.. so I guess I’m counting on your help in my crusade.

As Chris Rock would say, “Ya, hear?”

About AdminRenegade

Storyteller, Fan of Leadership gurus, Coffee Lover, especially Dunkin' Donuts.. and most importantly- a fierce advocate -Providing a new philosophy on what it means to be an administrative professional in today's workplace.

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