While visiting a software company, Martin Rowe saw many people wearing shorts to work. Can you or would you do that?
One of the nice things about working at home is that what you wear is irrelevant. Now that summer has finally arrived in Boston, it's warm enough to wear shorts. That won't last long, but I'll enjoy it for the next eight weeks or so.
Are shorts acceptable garments
at your workplace?
This morning, I put on long pants and paid a visit to The MathWorks, the company that publishes Matlab and Simulink. I'm sure many of you use these products. As I arrived at around 9:00 a.m., I noticed a number of people, both men and women, walking around wearing shorts. What a great idea.
Now, I realize that wearing shorts can be a safety risk in some workplaces, especially around machines. MathWorks is, of course, a software company, so there are no machines with moving parts. If it's not a safety risk in your workplace, do you wear shorts to work? Would you if management let you?
When I worked in an office up until two years ago, wearing shorts to work was not an option, at least not for men. When I started at Test & Measurement World in 1992, I had to wear a tie every day, including summer days. Then came "casual Friday," when we were allowed to wear polo shirts and khakis, but only on Friday. HR put out a flyer with people dressed in "acceptable" Friday clothing. Over time, we began to wear business casual clothing every day. My neck has been happy ever since. Eventually, we were all wearing jeans, but only after T&MW (and EDN) were sold off by a previous owner (Reed Elsevier) in February 2010 to Canon Communications. UBM acquired Canon in October of that year. One year, three employers.
Do you work at home once in a while, or do you need to be in the lab or factory to do your job? Tell us what it's like.
—Martin Rowe, Senior Technical Editor