Dress Code: How Metadot Tackles the Traditional Workplace Attire

Catherine Mulder on

woman looking at a variety of clothing options

The pandemic has made many companies trade the norm of button-ups and blazers to lounge pants and t-shirts. This is not necessarily a negative, many people love the comfortability and flexibility that comes with remote work attire. However, after weeks of working from home with failure to establish a balance between work and play, this can become an issue. Where collocated environments excel is in their nature of developing a strict line between work life and home life. When you remove the physicality from the workplace, many structures - such as attire - face changes. Forcing a strict dress code on employees isn’t a solution. It feels unnatural and a little unnecessary, especially when it is a standard day of work. At Metadot, we approach this in a fun, intentional and unique way. Follow us through our work week of themes, and see how we strategize each detail at our company - even down to our color schemes.

We celebrate Monday’s. It is the beginning of the workweek, and the beginning of opportunity to create something we can be proud of. We set the standard with our activity called the “Green Delivery.” This is our opening meeting, where we demo a project we completed from the week prior. In this meeting, we use a method similar to a stoplight. Employees have access to a virtual spreadsheet we refer to as the “Sprint.” The Sprint is a list of individual and team goals to accomplish throughout the week. When a task is highlighted green, it means it is on-time and in route to be completed by the following Monday. Yellow means there are challenges that are stalling the progress of the task, but are being addressed. Red means that the task will not be completed. We call this meeting “The Green Delivery” because each member of the team is expected to be wearing a green article of clothing to indicate the completion of their work. Not only does this keep things fun, but it is a set routine that breaks the norm of remote work. It feeds our team-first mentality and makes us work harder on an individual level to accomplish our goals.

From Tuesday through Thursday, the dress-code is up to the individual. Although our approach to clothing is rather relaxed, we still expect our employees to show up to the work day, presentable and ready to work hard. This means no holes in t-shirts, no bare shoulders and no pajamas. Hair should be brushed, and not have that “just rolled out of bed look” that we want to avoid. Maintaining self-care during remote work can sometimes be a challenge and we aim to create a routine where individuals are practicing good hygiene, keeping up with laundry and not being submerged in the “Groundhog Day” effect. When working remotely, it is common to experience this. People are spending many hours working from home, with very little opportunity to go outside and get ready for the day, especially in a pandemic. Work can feel redundant, and days can start to seem to blend together as one. At Metadot, we aim to avoid this at all costs. When we are clear about the expectation, people seem to be positively responsive to our methods. There is a strong understanding among the group that our dress-code goes deeper than just clothing, and our team appreciates the opportunities to look forward to themed days.

For special occasions, the dress code expectation is business-casual. If an individual is meeting with someone outside of the company, virtually or in person, they are expected to dress appropriately and professionally. Even when working remotely, we want to demonstrate our professionalism regardless of the setting.

On Friday’s, traditional workplaces typically have “Casual Fridays” or “Hawaiian T-shirt Fridays” - while we do the exact opposite at Metadot. We strive to be anything but traditional. When other companies zig - we zag. We start the week strong, and we end the week stronger. This means every Friday each member of the team dresses in their best formalwear, we call these days “Elegant Friday.” We believe that when we look our best, we perform our best. Our formal attire is a fun way to celebrate the accomplishments and hard work of our team throughout the week. Men are expected to wear button-ups and ties, while women are expected to wear dresses, pant-suits or blazers. On Friday’s we hold virtual “Happy Hours” where we finish the day in a video meeting, having conversations unrelated to work. The combination of team connection and fancy attire, adds an element of something to look forward to during the week, especially in the challenging times of the pandemic. Although remote working can feel repetitive, our strategic efforts to create a work atmosphere of professionalism and fun make Metadot a leader in the world of remote working.