The rise of the Silicon Valley tech companies has completely reiterated what it means to dress for success. These days everyone’s dream job seems to favor a business casual culture. Even traditional companies are shedding the corporate culture—the ones with crisp suits and ties and formal meetings and artificial etiquette.
But the problem with these companies is that it gets very easy for the line between ‘businesses and ‘casual’ to get blurred. So if you find yourself in a workplace with an open environment, here are a few things you need to know.
Remember, it’s Casual for Productivity
The first thing you’ve got to know is that is a company harbors a casual environment, it is to provide ease to the workers so they’ll be more productive.
People generally assume that a freer workplace means lesser work. It’s quite easy to believe that the folks at Google swing around on the fireman’s pole, slide between floors and nap in those pods to kill time. But the reason the employer has provided all these comforts is allow maximum productivity in their employees. Uniformed desks and cubicles have proven to limit creativity, haven’t they? So a relaxed culture attempts to break those bounds.
Just keep reminding yourself that even though the environment is lax, you’re still expected to perform to the best of your ability.
Dressing the Part
Here’s the confusing bit about business casual. Because the definitions can vary from tech companies that fancy a t shirt and sandals combo to offices that give up ties but still want that button up.
Business Insider has offered some help on the matter, saying that it is always better to dress smarter than you think you ought to. Here’s an example:
If you want to work your way up the ranks, you’ve got to look the part. As superficial as that sounds, even in the most casual of environments, your attire shows how invested you are in the job. It shows the amount of effort you’re putting in. Throwing on that college sweatshirt might be convenient, but it isn’t always the best idea.
Managers and employers struggle with this point the hardest. But remember, the way you dress is going to set the example. it will be the reference point according to which other people will show up to work.
Be Prepared to Work Hard
To the outsider, a casual work environment seems like something out of a book. And well, it can be. But the truth is, you’re hired to do a job, and you might not always have the time to goof off playing ping pong. Scratch that, you might never have the time to goof off and uphold the ‘easygoing’ culture. More often than not, you’ll be stretched and worked hard. It’s just that you’ll be doing it on a laptop sat on a bean bag rather than in an aloof cubicle. So don’t assume that because a company seems like a fun, inspiring place to work in, you’re not going to be working late hours, or be under pressure.
Casual Environment, Professional Attitude
Here’s the thing. Even though you’re working in a lax office, it does not give you the space to be unprofessional. You are still expected to show up on time, or complete your work hours, to be respectful to your colleagues and to remember your civilities. Yes, these companies have shed artificial courtesies, but they still expect you to be a pro.
Business casual has thrown up many a people, but if you’re vary of a few things, you’re going to fit right in!