Dress For Success

dress for success

Starting this year, Illinois State University initiated a classroom dress code for students in marketing classes. Students taking marketing classes will no longer be able to roll out of bed, throw on whatever they feel like, and head off to class. Business casual is the new rule. According to the school, the policy is to promote professional conduct and prepare students for life after college.

As of this writing, some students are fighting it. They claim it violates their rights according to the school constitution, so this rule may not last.

Without getting into whether the dress code is legal or not, I think students should be aware their personal appearance affects more than just their g


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6 Responses to Dress For Success

  1. Patrick says:

    I think this is a great idea. I have heard of a few other programs requiring a similar approach. Personally, I think it should apply to anyone in a B-school, marketing, or other similar course where students are being prepared for interaction with clients. I have seen quite a few people who do not know how to dress or act in front of others. It is unprofessional and reflects badly on themselves and their company.

    By the way, I think you should stress *some* bling. One or two fashionable pieces of jewelry is plenty in most environments. More than that and it could become a distraction. (of course this varies in each environment).

    Great article.

  2. baselle says:

    I think this is also a great thing to remember. If nothing else, you are being interviewed by people who have appearance pet peeves. Now officially they are not going to tell you that you weren’t hired because you wore that pet peeve of theirs, but they will look extra hard to find something that they can ding you on.

    Remember to take it easy on the “what’s acceptable in fashion”. Right now flip-flops are “acceptable” and they drive me right up the wall. And I’ve sat on an interview panel or two.

  3. Ann says:

    I’d have to argue for the sake of arguing, and to make a point: In today’s business world, appearance is becoming less of a, how can I put it?, thing. People don’t see people any more, and fashion has become a thing of the teenager world.

    Of course, I am a professional in my field, work from home, and work online on the side, and I am highly sensitive to the connection between appearance and dress and someone’s seriousness. The above is just a point to ponder.

  4. Duane Gran says:

    It is popular to say that appearances don’t matter, but I believe we all appreciate if someone treats our presence as being worthy of dressing for the occasion. I’ve interviewed many people who fall into three sartorial categories:

    1) Those who flagrantly won’t wear decent clothes to the interview
    2) Those who will do it in the interview only and obviously look like they left the house wearing dad’s shoes.
    3) Those who dress appropriately as a rule of thumb. Believe me, you can tell.

    In the end I’ll hire the person who offers the most value, but one portion of the value equation is whether I think the person can represent my company. All things being equal, the person with talent and professionalism has an edge.

  5. Pingback: Casual Dress: When It Makes Sense for the Workplace - SavingAdvice.com Blog

  6. I agree on the need for job candidates to be mindful of the impression they present via their clothing choices – but it doesn’t stop with the job interview. Unless they’re Silicon Valley programmers or part of the entertainment biz, career-minded individuals who aim to climb the corporate ladder definitely need to leave those torn jeans, concert tees and flip-flops in the closet.

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