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Why business casual will kill your career:

“I don’t meet the public, so what does it matter how I look at work?” According to the latest university studies, it matters a great deal. The way you look and dress affects those around you, and when you look good, you not only make others feel good about you, you also make them feel better about themselves. It’s even possible that your co-workers could be more productive when you pay attention to the way you look.

Professor Patrick Poessel, visiting professor at Vanderbilt University demonstrated that looking at women who wear cosmetics makes observers feel better and may also improve their health. Poessel and his colleagues studied the emotional and physical reactions of 60 women to a variety of images. Interspersed among 40 color photographs of people and places were the faces of four women, with and without makeup. Not only did the images of the made-up faces get rated more positively than those without makeup, but women viewing them experienced decreased hart rate, indicating a positive physiological response. Also, half the women had a measurably-improved immune response and a decrease in stress hormones after viewing the pictures of the women wearing makeup. Poessel says this result has occurred in othr studies as well.

The way you look and dress announces not only how you feel about yourself, it now seems that it can also predict how others may feel when they are around you. Casual Friday has been abused so severely that employees show up regularly in rumpled shirts, flip flops and other inappropriate attire. This “casual” day may be more aptly described as Casualty Friday because it has gone from bad to worse with each succeeding year.

If you feel good about who you are and what you do, shout it to the world by dressing to impress rather than dressing for your comfort on Fridays. Let Friday be known as Fashion Friday instead of Casual (or casualty) Friday. You will not only be a source of inspiration for your co-workers or employees, you will increase their happiness level!

Comments (1)

Thank you for this reminder! After three years of working in academia, I have unfortunately fallen victim to casualty Friday.

So in honor of your beautiful reminder, I've instituted Fashion Fridays in my little corner of the office. We all thank you!

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