Summer Casual Confusion? Confronting a Potentially Sticky Situation

Summer Casual Confusion? Confronting a Potentially Sticky Situation

At the beginning of the summer season, many Business Owners implement or adopt a more casual dress code. Some Business Owners will have a relaxed policy on all weekdays, others will allow employees to dress down on Fridays, and others still will say only when not facing clients or are not meeting outside the office. It’s a seasonal “perk” (just like Summer Fridays!) that most employees happily welcome, as they choose to shed formal “business attire” in favor of looser, lighter summer wear.

What is summer casual anyway? Companies and office environments are all unique. Business Owners can make the policy whatever they desire, too. And what works in one business or industry doesn’t necessarily work in another. Not to mention employees can have different ideas about what comprises summer casual.

So how do you have a summer office environment without the beachwear, low cut dresses, and other inappropriate summer clothing?

The solution is quite simple – every company should have a clear and definitive Summer Dress Code Policy that is distributed to all employees and reviewed with their Supervisor or Manager.

Here are some recommendations for your Company’s Summer Dress Code Guidelines:

  • Clothing that is revealing should not be worn to the office. This includes crop tops, tank tops, shorts and skimpy dresses, and under no circumstances should bare skin or underwear be visible.
  • Flip flops are not allowed. Closed toed shoes are encouraged, but leather sandals that cover most of the foot may also work.
  • Collared polo shirts are acceptable, however t-shirts without a collar is not encouraged.  It you allow t-shirts, they should be void of suggestive comments or photos.
  • Anything that may display political messages or any negative aspect of pop culture should also not be worn. (This applies in all seasons, of course.)
  • Jeans are acceptable if they are properly sized, without holes and tears and are not bleached out.
  • Any clothing might make another employee or co-worker feel uncomfortable should be banned. Exercise tights, yoga pants and bike shorts belong in the gym, not the office.

Employees should feel comfortable asking their Supervisor or Manager about specific items of clothing if they are unsure of the suitability for the office. As with most things that “go wrong” in an office, confusion and uncertainty can certainly be a major cause of any problems.  This can most certainly be rectified with comprehensive guidelines for a Summer Dress Code.

Enjoy your Summer!

Sample Letter to introduce a dress code:

Work Dress Codes and Image Collection:



For further discussion or comments, please contact Gail L. Trugman Nikol, President Unique Business Solutions, gail@ubsassociates.com or call (516) 935-5641.

By admin May 23, 2017