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Assess job performance, not just dress

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in Leaders & Managers,Workplace Communication

Q: We have a casual-dress policy. One of our managers deals with the public a lot and she tries to dress more professionally, but her judgment is awful. Her clothes are dated and often downright silly. How can I get her to spruce up?

A: Proceed with care. If she feels singled out when everyone else dresses however they please, she might turn against you. Examine exactly what concerns you—beyond her dress. Unless you have lots of examples of folks who’ve refused to do business with her or not treated her seriously due to her choice of clothes, then my guess is you’re either dissatisfied with her performance or simply have a personality conflict. The clothes might just be an easy target.

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