Leave The Muumuu At Home
So the casual look has come to Corporate America, right? Maybe not as much as you'd think. According to a new poll by the Gallup Organization for Accountants on Call, a Saddle Brook (N.J.) placement firm, 74% of the 750 employees surveyed nationwide work for outfits having some kind of dress code--with 21% saying it's a strict one and 22% that it's a combination of strict and relaxed. Now, there are no data from the past to see how dress-up demands have evolved. And many of the codes aren't actually written down anywhere. But it's a good bet that, at many companies, there always will be some demand for high sartorial standards. The buttoned-down places that have loosened a bit have only done so in certain areas. Consider IBM, which once set the standard for clothing correctness: a dark suit, white dress shirt, and subdued tie for men. At its Somers (N.Y.) PC headquarters, there are so many sweaters that the place looks like a ski lodge. But at corporate HQ in Armonk, N.Y., it's still Suit City, as if nothing had ever changed.
CORPORATE AMERICA'S SARTORIAL RULES A strict dress code 21% A relaxed dress code 31% Combo: strict/relaxed 22% No dress code 25% DATA: THE GALLUP ORGANIZATION