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To ask trainee again to change her clothes

(112 Posts)
badbelinda Mon 09-Sep-13 21:11:09

Thread inspired by recent headmistress and uniform thread. I work in a professional role that involves a lot of public interface and within that role I also mentor juniors. My current junior often wears smart jeans (usually black) and a year ago I told her I didn't think jeans were appropriate for our work setting and didn't give a very professional image. At that time she stopped wearing them for a while, changing to smart trousers which I thought was fine. She's recently started wearing jeans again and now also smart trainers. So AIBU to bring this up again? If you go to see a professional in any role, what would you think of them wearing jeans and trainers (albeit smart ones)? Am I just getting old?

hettienne Mon 09-Sep-13 21:12:21

If it's inappropriate for your environment then mention is. Is there actually a dress code where you work?

KirjavaTheCat Mon 09-Sep-13 21:17:54

I'm struggling to imagine 'smart trainers'. Surely trainers are just trainers? confused

Do you mean the shoes that look a bit comfier than normal office pumps, the ones with soft grippy soles?

GirlsonFilm Mon 09-Sep-13 21:18:22

Tell her, I remind the trainee in our office constantly to remove her nose piercing she'll get it one day

Hassled Mon 09-Sep-13 21:20:23

If you don't already have some sort of Code of Conduct which also covers acceptable dress, then you need to write one. Do you have an HR Department? While you may resolve the issue with this trainee, the problem is bound to re-occur with a subsequent one.

Quangle Mon 09-Sep-13 21:23:44

If she's been told no jeans then it's no jeans.

No jeans in our office (not public facing) apart from the IT dept who are always lugging bits of server around so they are allowed. I would raise it if someone was not in line with the culture of the office - particularly if it's in the dress code (ours is).

jellymaker Mon 09-Sep-13 21:26:35

No YANBU. I think it says more about her attitude to authority TBH. I have had to deal with this at work. It starts out as this but turns into not being able to follow instructions on other things as well. Being able to comply with what are on the surface quite small demands is a sign of maturity and someone's readiness to take their job seriously. I Would stick to your guns if I was you but I have colleagues that disagreed with me at work abut this.

Umlauf Mon 09-Sep-13 21:29:35

Personally I wouldn't bat an eyelid at a professional wearing smart jeans and trainers, I think people dressed in well fitting dark jeans and a good tip often look smarter than creased polyester black trousers, but that isn't the point here. The point is that there is a clear dress code that comes with the role that she is flouting, so yanbu and she may need a firmer reminder.

I too am interested to know about the smart trainers. How can trainers be smart?!

badbelinda Mon 09-Sep-13 21:36:16

I meant new looking trainers as opposed to grungy ones (probably designer though I wouldn't know)

chipsandpeas Mon 09-Sep-13 21:38:01

trainers yeah a big no no but cant see a big problem with black jeans, they can be just as smart as black work trousers

timidviper Mon 09-Sep-13 21:44:16

I agree black jeans you could get away with depending on what they are worn with and as long as they are not faded. Trainers definitely no.

I would tell her again and remind her that you have pointed this out previously and, if it happens again, you would have to put it in writing which would mean it would be on her record.

Pipparivers Mon 09-Sep-13 21:47:43

What do you do? I don't expect the same dress code for all professionals

raisah Mon 09-Sep-13 21:50:46

We had a trainee who wore tops so fitted her nipples werw visible and another whose hemline was the same as her knickers. So everybody got an eyeful eyeful everytime she bent down. I dont belive that she wasnt aware of the impact that her clothes (or lack of) had on others. People don't have any self awareness anymore, they are just stuck in their own bubbles.

BrokenSunglasses Mon 09-Sep-13 21:51:00

There's a fine line now with black jeans that are practically trousers, but if she was going to chance it she should have played it safe with boots instead of anything vaguely trainery.

She crossed the line, so have a word. She's probably half expecting it.

sparkle12mar08 Mon 09-Sep-13 21:52:24

If your workplace actually has a dress code specifiying no jeans then just remind her of it in a fairly low key way after a team meeting or catch up or whatever - "And just to finish on, I've been asked to remind everyone of the company dress code - no jeans/bare shoulders/sports clothes/'whatever restrictions you have' etc. Please do take a look at the policy, it's important that we all abide by it especially in our customer facing roles." If that doesn't work then you'll need to have a very specific meeting in a couple of weeks and just come out with it. "Your work is otherwise fine but you are really letting yourself down with your dress - it's not appropriate for this workplace and you need to comply with the dress policy. Please do not wear jeans or trainers again."

If however there is no specified dress code and you are going on your own preferences and general workplace custom, then you may have to be more subtle.

BigPawsBrown Mon 09-Sep-13 21:59:24

Solicitors? Jeans a no no in our office, but with the skinny trouser suit being in fashion some go a step further to jeans. Is frowned upon though.

Awks Mon 09-Sep-13 22:02:54

I had to tell someone no jeans the other day. She looked at me and said "but these are Jaeger".

Jomato Mon 09-Sep-13 22:04:27

I'm a "professional". Today I wore jeans and trainers to work, I do most days. My clothing isn't unusual in my office. It's all about the individual work place so it's very difficult to judge whether you are being unreasonable or not.

badbelinda Mon 09-Sep-13 22:13:56

Don't want to be too specific about work place but think solicitor (it's not that, but is equivalent) and she is a trainee solicitor, so meeting clients who will be putting a lot of trust in her. No specific dress code (small firm in which I am a partner), so this is just my opinion of what I think people expect when they come in (my male partners wear suits and ties).

I deal with professionals like solicitors, accountants, finance professionals etc. and jeans and trainers would not be acceptable. People sometimes come to work in casual clothes for example if they are on a bike or trainers if they walk to work but people change when they get to work.

If you have told her jeans are not acceptable then it isn't for her to decide that she can wear them anyway.

TheCraicDealer Mon 09-Sep-13 22:25:56

Yanbu. I do not get this- if she's meeting clients then she's the face of the company. Your company! She needs to project a smart, professional appearance.

One of the things my boss told me during my first few months in my job was "never walk into a meeting with your arms the same length, even if it's an empty file, have something. It looks better". Dressing in jeans doesn't mean you're not good at your job, but there are some roles were clients expect you to look a certain way. It inspires trust and gives some reassurance, which ultimately makes your job easier.

TheFarSide Mon 09-Sep-13 22:30:33

Am I the only person in the world who doesn't care what someone is wearing? I certainly wouldn't have a problem with a doctor or solicitor wearing jeans.

IsItMeOr Mon 09-Sep-13 22:36:49

If you're a partner, don't you make the rules?

I'd expect smarter attire than that, as a client.

Some people care and some people don't. The problem is that you don't know what category your client falls into when you first meet them. You stand less chance of a negative reaction to formal clothing than informal.

SwedishEdith Mon 09-Sep-13 22:39:02

I'm interested in her smart trainers, as I'm after some.

If I was the client of a solicitor(or equivalent), I wouldn't care at all if they were wearing smart black jeans. However, I wouldn't ever wear jeans myself if meeting the public (in professional capacity) but I think that's an age thing. I think ties are looking dated now as well.

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