Though the 1960’s Marlo Thomas’ sitcom, “That Girl” always featured her character impeccably dressed, this particular look wouldn’t make the cut in the Aetna office of 1967. The ‘kicky’ white hosiery and length of the skirt, would rule this look out. Then again, she played a struggling actress, not a secretary. As far as the advice for posture, grooming and courtesy goes, this is still valuable etiquette advice for most office jobs.
Neatness And Courtesy Boon To Girls Starting Job Soon
If you're planning to begin your first full-time job upon graduation this fall, you may be a little frightened at the prospect. Don’t be. The change from classroom to office will be an adventure. You’ll enjoy more money and more independence than you have ever had before. And you’ll have more responsibilities. A good appearance and cooperative attitude will go a long way in smoothing your adjustment to the business world. To help you make the change, here are some suggestions from Aetna Life and Casualty, which employs over 15,000 women nationally:
- MAKE-UP: Avoid heavy make-up, especially on your eyes. Use a light touch to achieve a natural look.
- HAIR; Wear it long or short, up or down, whichever way pleases you and compliments your face, but always have it shining clean and neat.
- POSTURE: Stand tall. Slouching does nothing for the fit of your clothes, your appearance, or the way you feel. And, you won't tire as easily if you sit with your back straight and feet on the floor while typing.
- CLOTHES: Your business wardrobe need not be expensive. Many of the clothes you already own will adapt nicely to office wear. Simple dresses, of course, are always appropriate. And you can utilize many of your skirts if you wear them with attractive blouses or dress sweaters. Save the button-down collars and shetlands for casual wear. Leave your mini’s at home. They don't adapt very well to sitting at a typewriter or bending over files. Hemlines should fall anywhere from the bottom of your knees to an inch above them, depending on your preference.
- SHOES: While either high or low heels are acceptable, you’ll probably find the new lower heel styles most comfortable. Loafers and sandals are out.
- HOSE: A must in the office, winter or summer. But keep them businesslike. Fishnet or textured stockings are “kicky” for fun times but not for work. Naturally, tights and knee socks are taboo. JEWELRY: Keep it simple. Dangling earrings and jangling bracelets are not only inappropriate in the office but present a safety hazard. They can get caught on typewriters and file drawers.
- HANDS: Keep them well groomed at all times. They are in the spotlight when you perform office duties. Nails should be of medium length and evenly tapered. Long nails have a habit of breaking when you type or, worse yet, getting in the way. A coat of clear light polish will make your nails more attractive and give them added strength to help prevent peeling and splitting.
- VOICE: Keep your voice controlled and distinct, especially in telephone conversations.
- PERSONALITY: Be friendly. You'll find that your coworkers will respond favorably. And remember that your boss deserves respect and consideration.
- OFFICE ETIQUETTE: You will want to be more formal at work than you would be at home. Remember that any rule of etiquette is based on one simple concept making those around you feel comfortable in your presence. If you are polite and courteous, you will quickly feel “at home” in your new job. – Madera Tribume, 1967
Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia