Here are three pieces of etiquette advice that made me go, hmm:

Don’t wear flip flops to work.
“U.S. style gurus are warning that the casual shoe once mainly seen on the beach could be damaging to careers. Shoes convey the mood of a woman. Wearing flip-flops conveys the mood that you are relaxed and on vacation. That’s not a good message in the office.”

Don’t IM someone you don’t know well.
“What's the deal with people you have never met before IMing you? IMing basically says, ‘I know you well enough to do this’ (among friends) or ‘this is urgent’ (among business associates). I cannot tell you how many times I receive IMs that fall into neither category.”

Don’t pull rank at the potty.
“Everyone is equal in the eyes of the bathroom. Even if you’re the boss’ boss. Doesn’t matter a whit in the bathroom, you’ve still got to follow the rules.”

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5 replies
  1. Diana
    Diana says:

    Yes! I’ve worked in some fairly casual work settings before, and there are a lot of people out there who think that a casual dress code (or even casual Friday!) means that you can wear rumpled shirts, ratty jeans, and flip-flops to work. Well, sure, I guess technically you can, but is that any way to impress your boss or instill respect among your colleagues?!

    A little side bar: One of my favorite shows on TV is TLC’s What Not To Wear. One point that they repeat almost every episode is that “casual” does not have to mean sweats and baggy shirts! You can be comfortable and still look great.

  2. Penelope Trunk
    Penelope Trunk says:

    Yeah, what is up with casual Fridays? What a misguided idea. You spend four days a week dressing to present a certain image in the workplace. Why do something else the fifth day? Pick a consistent image (casual is fine) and stick with it five days a week. Becuase consistency, which is really dependability, should be part of any image you project.

  3. Lizzie Post
    Lizzie Post says:

    Ah what would Emily Post do? I’ve heard of flip flop foibles, and IMing intrusions, but I have yet to receive a question about pulling rank at the potty. That gave me a laugh! :)

  4. Hayabusa Clothing
    Hayabusa Clothing says:

    Great article Penelope. I really do agree with the IM point you had mentioned. It is so much annoying when people you don’t know IM you about stuff. If it is one of you long standing customers it’s fine. But people you barely you know IMing you is not really ok. And the sad fact is many of them don’t know about it.

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