Starting in the 1990’s businesses began instituting relaxed dress codes. “Casual Friday” started as a sales technique in Hawaii, the Hawaiian garment industry was trying to sell more shirts, the idea was to encourage Hawaiian business to let their employees wear Hawaiian shirts to the office once a week. The mainland adapted this trend as it quickly spread to California and across the U.S. This “no cost perk” came with controversy, at first. Eventually most businesses came to accept the Casual Friday standard.
According to recent research, almost one-third of office employees would prefer to work for a company that offers a business casual dress code. Business casual dress codes can provide additional benefits for employees because it alleviates workplace stresses including those of discomfort, expense and conformity. Here are four benefits to your employees trading in their business suits, ties and heels for more casual dress:
A business casual dress code can help employees feel more comfortable, relaxed and free to focus on their work. Employees who don’t have to worry about their apparel being scrutinized or measured against others may feel less pressure and as a result may perform better at work.
Under strict dress guidelines some employees may lose focus due to resentment over the money they have to pay to meet dress restrictions. Instead, a relaxed dress code in the office can help ease economic strain on employees.
Companies who offer a casual dress code can maximize the versatility of its work force. For instance, a small business that relies on its employees to multi-task can use workers to do more than greet customers.
Contributions can come from people who dress differently, but share common goals and values. Companies that support casual dress codes send a positive message to employees that celebrates and appreciates their individuality.