I’m curious — who is going back to the office regularly? Who’s going in as needed (to grab paperwork, resources, tools)? Which of your offices have a definite reopening date when they expect you to be back in regularly? And for those of you going back — what are you wearing? (Have your previously conservative offices gone business casual for the summer, or permanently?)
I’m still figuring out this poll software, but here’s a super ugly one to get a general idea. I’d love to hear more from you guys in the comments! This is going to vary HUGELY by region, industry, and so forth, but I think it’ll be an interesting discussion (as well as helping to direct content ideas, hopefully)…
(If you can’t see the poll below, try this link…)
The poll is now closed — as of June 8, 2020, these were the results:
Stock photo via Deposit Photos / photography33.
Although my area is re-opening, my company is taking it slow given we’ve proven we can WFH. I doubt we’ll be back in our building until fall at the earliest. If I do run into the office sporadically over the next few months (like to get binders I didn’t forecast needing when I thought we’d be WFH for 2-4 weeks….) I will be wearing relatively casual attire due to the low likelihood of seeing anyone and the fact that people tend to be more casual in the summer anyway.
aka… keep the recommendations for WFH attire coming. I won’t be shopping for “officewear” probably until 2021…
Same here! I am headed back 2 days a week for the summer (mainly to get away from breaking up boyfights every hour or so and playing Xbox referee). We’re not even contemplating a broader reopening until the fall. I might see 2-3 people, max, when I’m there. They’re all casual to business casual. I just spent $250 at Lululemon, because that’s what I’ll be wearing this summer!
Is there supposed to be a poll with options to select?
I see it in Firefox.
Does this link work to take you directly to the poll? https://poll.fm/10558857
Living in Washington, DC, we are not planning on opening any time soon and the government is encouraging telework for a number of phases into the reopening process. Adding another wrinkle, many in DC are reliant on public transportation, so safety and hours are impacted. The general understanding among many of my colleagues and friends is phasing in returning to the office after Labor Day.
That’s interesting. My firm is in DC and we are scheduling a rolling opening beginning in June, with full staffing hoped for by end of July.
My agency (federal govt) won’t even put a date out there yet so it’s not happening any time soon for us either. I absolutely love WFH so I’m in no rush to return!
Who is going back to the office regularly? Me! Our office never closed, but WFH was strongly encouraged. I WFH for a couple weeks and HATED it, so started going back.
Which of your offices have a definite reopening date when they expect you to be back in regularly? No definite everyone back in the office date – they are doing it locally and based on government guidance.
And for those of you going back — what are you wearing? I wear the exact same clothes as I did before (well, those that fit anyway). I missed dressing up so badly, and it’s so nice to have something normal again.
Have your previously conservative offices gone business casual for the summer, or permanently? Our office has always been the casual side of business casual, although management is pretty business casual (no ties, ever, even on our CEO). The few of us who are in the office now are mostly dressing as we always have.
I’ve been going to the office all this time. Mostly sitting here by myself. I’ve been dressing pretty much the same (although more on the casual side — leaving off the jackets for the most part) except that I have declared my own personal Casual Fridays. Guidance from On High has been business casual including jeans for the duration, even though we are normally business formal.
Oh, and yes we have a reopening date when more people are coming back and we are starting to open up more. It’s still several weeks out.
Office never closed (construction/engineering so considered “essential” in our state) but professional staff was encouraged to WFH in the early weeks. I’m back to 85% in the office now, because I hated WFH. Nowhere to actually set up a workstation at home , I missed having two monitors, I missed having the proper technical software to actually complete projects !!! , I missed the background white noise at the office, and I missed having a clear demarcation of office vs home/relaxation.
Workplace has always been fairly casual, so I’m just wearing the same things as I used to, which is a solid colored long-sleeved t-shirt or a blouse, jeans/jeggings, and sneakers, flats, or boots depending on the weather outside. I’ve sneaked in wearing black yoga pants a couple times during the last month, and no one blinked.
The Beagle has Landed
You are pretty much me. Our office (essential business – public transportation) pretty much never closed for the core management team as we needed to be here to show support for our front-line staff. We did wear “casual Friday’ clothes for about a month but as other staff started trickling back to the office, went back to regular business casual (no jeans). Going forward, I am going to wear pants more often than I did before as I found some non-jeans pull-on dress pants that I like wearing with flats or heels depending on the cut of the pants (flats for skinny ankle pants and heels for straight leg.) Still wearing dresses and blazers or cardigans on non-pants days. Not all of the pre-COVID clothes still fit, but what can you do.
Fortune 100 insurance company. Execs returned to home office last week and “regular” people begin filtering back in on 6/1. My location has higher cases so our return date is end of June. Planning on dressing super casual (we already allow jeans). We seem to be one of the first in our industry (P&C) returning to the office.
Another insurance company
Wow! My P&C company has said September 1!
Hi Colleague! I work for that same carrier!
Timely, because I just found out today I’m going to be remote permanently. I’m excited about the possibilities remote work will bring once the world is more normal (especially getting to spend extended time in other places) but also weirdly sad about never getting to buy officewear again and possibly never seeing my co-workers again.
In TX. Have been asked to return to the office June 8. It hasn’t been specifically addressed, but I assume business formal will be expected. I will wear my normal uniform of black pants, sleeveless shirt and blazer because it’s hot af outside and 32 degrees in the office. I’m honestly struggling with how I’m going to give up wearing my Allbirds 7 days a week.
Are you going to wear masks? I feel like masks with business formal would be such a weird look!
I mean, I feel like masks are a weird look period. I am going to wear one, at least as much as I can tolerate. I bought the Johnny Was (cotton) masks on the rec of, I think either SA or Housecounsel, sorry I can’t remember whom. They should be fine for my already eclectic outfits. Nothing goes with a floral top like a competing floral patterned mask, right? Heh.
With respect to floral masks and floral clothing, my position is that, as Stacy and Clinton used to say, “they don’t match, they go.”
No set date. People can come back on June 1 if they wish, but everyone who is able to work from home has been encouraged to continue doing so. I’m in that camp; I still have minimal childcare. I have not missed office clothing at all. I am not dressing like a slob at home but going back to office wear is going to be HARD.
Same! I’ve popped in a few times on the weekend to grab things/deal with the mountain of scanned in papers on my desk. Last time, I wore jeans and a T-shirt, time before that I can in after a run and didn’t change first.
I’m not looking forward to coming in regularly again… it’ll be a sad day.
KS IT Chick
Academic medical center, in a cube farm satellite building. Our suite is supposed to hold 260, we normally have about 220 , and there are currently 7 people in the office. Yesterday we were told that we won’t be back until at least 7/1, and even then we won’t all be back at the same time for the foreseeable future. They are trying to figure out how to deal with the break room and the bathrooms.
I was already wearing jeans every if I didn’t have a meeting or training scheduled. I don’t see that changing.
I work for AMC as well (are you in IT too?). We are work from home until after Labor Day when we will “reassess.” We can go in if we are masked in all common areas and practice social distancing. All meetings are remote.
I’m on the customer side of IT (dealing with execs), so we were on the formal side of business casual before. Since meetings are off the table for the next several months (at least), I imagine we’ll slowly transition to true business casual.
My office may start reopening in late June/early July for people who want to go back, although that’s not certain, but there’s no pressure for anyone to go back right now and they’re specifically asking high risk people to consider not coming back yet (so, me). I would anticipate that I’ll be WFH until the fall, maybe back for a bit and then possibly WFH again for awhile if there’s a second wave?
I’m in a skirt today but only because it’s hot AF here and the skirt is a foldover skirt, so no actual waistband. #win
When I go back….who knows. We’re business casual, but will it be summer, fall, or winter business casual? No idea.
We never closed, so I’m still here. Wearing BR pants with Converse today, lol.
Healthcare worker…been here since Day 1.
Smallish marketing agency (~50 people in our office). We have no return date so far, but with a higher-risk husband and a 9yo who shouldn’t be left to his own devices, I won’t be back for a while. My bosses know this, and I’ve been somehow keeping up productivity while at home, so I hope/expect they’ll be flexible with me. I miss being in the office, and I think I work better there, but we’re crammed in like sardines — it’s not set up to social distance, even if I were single and childless.
As for clothes, I haven’t worn real pants since March and I’m kind of missing it. Very casual workplace, so jeans are standard, but I’m looking wistfully at my dressier work clothes like blazers and dresses. We’ll see if I get to wear them.
I missed my office clothes too so I’m dressing up a little for my zoom meetings now, though I only cover my tattoos for external meetings.
I’m trying to at least hold my weight steady and hopefully lose some during all this, so it’s helpful for me to wear real pants a few times a week, even if it’s only for meetings.
Confirmed my unit will not be going back til next year as we are already supporting a virtual business line. Broader company will be surveying who wants to go and is reasonably necessary in staggered order.
Work in entertainment in the NE (lawyer). Very slow reintegration of staff into building based on production. Mostly essential production personnel. I do not anticipate my dept being back before end of year. We can truly do all of our WFH and I know our company wants to be very measured and cautious. They have not made any statement as to when, this is just my guess.
My office is still WFH, although I do have to go in 2 days next week to orient an intern (so they can then WFH!). We were always on the casual side of business casual, although my personal style was a little more dressy than the rest of my office. I think I kind of want to edge more casual now, but there really isn’t a female equivalent of “khakis and a collared shirt”. At least not one that looks good on me.
I haven’t heard anything from management about a full time return. I actually got a survey that had the tone of “do you want to do this indefinitely?” The company has said they will do a phased return of employees, and I will be in the first or second phase to go back.
I work for a government agency in the greater SF Bay Area. Our office attire is usually business casual (with more formal attire for board meetings and certain presentations), but we also do a lot of field work. Most of us are working from home, with the ability to stop by the office if we need hard files or other supplies. I’m guessing that once we’re back in the office more regularly everyone is going to lean more heavily on field clothes.
Solo practitioner here. I’ve been working in my very small office. Dressing very casually. No jail visits or in- person client meetings. I had my first court hearing today – defended a client in a DVPO hearing. We had to wait in the courthouse lobby until our case was called. I wore a mask. The pro se plaintiff did not. My client, who lives in another state, appeared by phone. I wore a suit for the first time in months. I can’t imagine what criminal court will be like, but I’ll know in the next several weeks.
Biglaw. No reopening announced. We’re not even supposed to stop by the office without prior permission. I’m personally WFH in perpetuity due to my health issues.
I work for a small firm in Texas. Today was my last WFH day. Back in the office on June 1st. Wish I could WFH all the time. Working remotely has been a dream come true. I have a dedicated study room where I had brought home my entire office set up (dual monitors, monitor risers, keyboard, laptop, USB router). I was super productive. Loved feeling safe at home, loved not having to be micromanaged, deal with office drama, or constant interruptions, loved being able to take a break and go hug, tickle, and kiss my kids, loved using my kitchen to make a hot lunch, loved having an extra hour of my day since I didn’t have to commute back and forth, loved the freedom of wearing comfortable clothes, and loved not having to wear makeup. About the only thing I didn’t like was my chair since it wasn’t meant to be sat on for eight hours a day. Our office never closed despite the “stay home, work safe” orders due to being an “essential” service. Dress code had always been business casual with jeans allowed on casual Fridays. I imagine I’ll just resume wearing the same work clothes as before when I go back, but this time with a mask.
I miss my regular clothes.
Our campus is still closed with summer classes online. I am essential, but I only go in occasionally. I went in this morning to meet a professor who needed to measure his classroom/lab to determine how they will teach in the fall, plus a whole slew of other things, including returning rental textbooks for a student who was leaving town. I was only in for about an hour and my uniform has been jeans, converse and a funny t-shirt. I was joking with my faculty colleague that he didn’t even notice my funny t-shirt and he said that he was distracted by my Hello Kitty mask. I think it will be a while before we reopen and, like others, I miss my work clothes. But not enough to be longing to be back in the office full time!
Our law firm has remained open; however, our building has been closed to the public (we own the building). Employees are given the option of working from home; however, that is not always convenient because our county court has remained essentially open with telephonic hearings, etc. Client meetings have been happening via Zoom. I personally have been working from home 2-3 days a week and in the office the rest, which has been a perfect arrangement for me and my kiddos (who have been doing online school). I am feeling pressure to return to the office full time once the school year ends next week. We have hired a part-time nanny, which will allow me to be in the office 4 days a week. Definitely dressing more casual in the office.
What a great post! Good ideas. As for what to wear as we start going back into the office, I fear we women will lose credibility gains we have made if we don’t dress to match the formality of the guys in our offices. I am the head of my group at Canada’s largest law firm and I am continually amazed that the female lawyers dress so much more casually than their male counterparts. How you present yourself matters. If the guys are all wearing suits with great (polished) shoes, crisp shirts, ties and socks to match, then the women need to keep up with fab suits, jewelry and great shoes. Get into it and if you can’t, then unfortunately I fear your career may suffer if you get given less challenging assignments, less client interaction and less responsibility when the partners assume your lack of attention in your dress reflects how you will handle a file. Is that right or fair? Maybe not. Is it reality – you betcha!