EngineerChic ~ Workplace dress-codes: a win for the ladies!
The workplace is no safe haven from the ongoing battle between the sexes. Lets face it, in most cases (pay, promotions, team events that mostly involve drinking) the guys usually come out on top. Women are slowly closing the gap, but there is still much more to do. However, there is one domain where there is a clear advantage to being a woman in the workplace dress-codes.
Whether it be business casual, business formal or any other variation of “work clothing”, I’ve observed an unmistakable edge that women have over the men in the office.
In the Summer, while my male colleagues at my Firm slog all day and night in their identical grey, blue and black suits, which grow ever more creased as the work week wears on, sweat patches expanding under their shirtsleeves and feet swelling and blistering in tight dress-shoes, I get to breeze around in sleeveless dresses and sandals.
In the Winter, when staffed in snow-stormy cities like Minneapolis or Chicago, I bundle up with tailored, down-lined coats that come down to below my knees, thick pants with sweaters, scarves, classy gloves and boots. My poor male teammates shiver away in their not-nearly-as-warm coats worn over thin wool suits, their feet once again blistering in frozen dress shoes and hands and faces freezing due to their macho choices to leave their gloves and scarves at home.
I also get to change my outfits every day of the week; my clothing being small in size and weight, and easy to fold. The men, however, end up wearing the same suit four days in a row, and having to carry their steam-ironed suit jackets in a separate bag on the plane.
I can express my personality with different colors and styles from day to day, choosing outfits, shoes, jewelry and accessories to match my mood or the season. The men have very little wiggle room to express themselves, although I will give credit to those who at least try and differentiate themselves with watches, cuff links, tailored suits or in some cases, embroidering their initials on the torso of their shirts. Unfortunately for them, these fancies often cost a small fortune compared with women’s clothing and accessories.