Like many of us noticing the trends among the Big 4, Clayton & McKervey has introduced a summer dress policy, called “Dress for Your Day.” This allows staff members to dress according to the day they have planned; which could mean jeans or khakis for an office day, or a suit or blazer for days when client meetings or meetings with a banker, attorney or prospective client are on the agenda.
We know this is not a new idea. Casual Friday has been around for decades, and casual dress has been the norm in some offices for several years. But that hasn’t necessarily been true of public accounting firms — at least not until the past few years. Trends in human resources and changes to our culture have encouraged those of us in traditional industries to take a hard look at our position regarding attire.
The accounting industry has been, admittedly, old school; and for good reason! Clients pay us professional fees and we want to look professional in earning them. But it’s time to acknowledge that professional dress is evolving — and that power dressing is open to interpretation. Many of us grew up with “Dress for Success” as a guidepost. So as we evaluate Dress for Your Day this summer, we’re looking to see what impacts, if any, it has on our productivity, on morale, and on our ability to remain professional regardless of how formally we are attired. So for now, we see how it goes and hope for no wardrobe malfunctions – or flip flops. Even Dress for Your Day has its limits.