Ed. note: This is the first in a series of posts by Madalyn Bozdech, a senior in the Business Administration program. She has a passion for camp ministry and when she graduates she hopes to work full time at a camp and maybe even run one someday. In December, she will be getting married and in her spare time she likes to read, hike, be outdoors, work on home projects, and cook. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A few months into my freshman year at LCU, my friends made an unusual, funny comment to me on a Wednesday afternoon. I was wearing slacks, a nice blouse, a blazer and a nice pair of dress shoes. When I walked towards them in the cafeteria, they looked and me and said, “Mady, you walk with purpose. We can hear you enter a room. You look like you could trample anything in your way and you seem extra confident today.”
LCU business majors have an ongoing tradition known as Business Dress Wednesday. Four years ago when I started at LCU, I didn’t really understand why we did that or how to dress in business clothes. As I continued on with my classes, however, I quickly learned why.
As a society, we have generally accepted a more casual attitude toward dress. Shoppers wear pajamas to Walmart. Students wear sweatpants or pj’s to class. People working in the office are wearing clothes that are more and more casual, such as a pair of jeans and a t-shirt.
In an effort to set an example and reclaim dress, LCU business professors Mr. Teoro and Mr. Gowin set up one day a week where business students are required to wear business dress. Yet this goes beyond simply setting an example and reclaiming what is appropriate dress for public and business settings.
Business Dress Wednesday is also about teaching us and showing us what future employers will be looking at when they hire someone. Showing up to an interview dressed too casually or showing up and putting little effort into your appearance can cost you a job. The way you dress communicates to employers just as much as what you say. But Business Dress Wednesday also does something else: it helps us become more confident.
It was after that first semester when I realized why we do this. One, it helps us learn what business dress means so that we can impress our employers later, but it also helps build our confidence. When we know we’ve put thought into our clothing choices and we feel good, we will act more resolved. We become more confident in ourselves and our abilities. Wearing appropriate clothing helps us become confident leaders in the business world.
Over the next few posts, I will give some examples of how not to dress for Business Dress Wednesday, what good business dress looks like for men and women, how you can shop on a budget for those items, and sum it up with a few thoughts from some individuals in the business program about what they think about Business Dress Wednesday.
People say that a picture says a thousand words. When you walk into an interview for your first job, what will that employer’s picture of you look like, and what will it say about you?