I love that in the UK we can make such conversation about the weather no matter if it is good or bad or just changeable, we just love to talk about it. But the recent temperatures have been hitting some pretty lofty heights, so there are some interesting issues on a lot of people’s minds…
Like what exactly you’re supposed to wear for work when the mercury is hitting 30 degrees.
Now how you respond or your ability to respond will differ to the working environment you operate in. Most employers have some sort of dress code. So, it’s worth considering whether it needs to be revised over the summer months. It’s the kind of thing that you won’t regularly give much thought to, but when the baking heat hits us, it’s the only thing that your staff can talk about, oh and the lack of air conditioning or too much air conditioning.
You might decide that you can reasonably allow your staff to relax the dresscode a little bit. Whether or not this is really appropriate though will cone down to the role that they have in your business, the nature of the service you offer, and how much contact they have with your customers and clients.
Health and safety is a key issue here, and sometimes hard hats and steeled capped boots might just be 100% necessary. Comfort is important, but keeping your staff away from danger should always be your number one priority. If they’re struggling to carry out their roles because of soaring temperatures, then you need to reconsider how their days are mapped out and what you can do to support them. Can tasks be done at in a different way, could you change the working hours for a temporary period and offer more flexible ways of working.
You need to make sure that any changes don’t have an impact on your brand. If you’re a professional services company then formal dress may be expected but in other area coming in more casual may also be appropriate.
Back in 2014, Starbucks took a u-turn on its anti-tattoo policy, and finally accepted that no one really cared if their barista was adorned with body art – and that actually, many of their customers would prefer it.
There’s an interesting conversation to be had here about your employees serving as a mirror to your customers, and how similar styles can foster better rapport and more trust.
The key takeaway? Dress codes are sometimes important. But the safety and comfort of your staff are paramount. So no Bikini’s but it doesn’t always have to be a suit. Don’t get stuck in old ways of working that might not be serving your business.
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