How you dress can actually improve work performance - here's why
Every morning, when we dress ourselves, there are a number of factors that influence what we choose to wear.
These could include the people we are going to see, the events we are going to attend and the tasks we may have to undertake. Each event, task or group of people has a different set of dress requirements.
One of the most common events we dress for, is work.
While some people may find choosing the perfect outfit for work a simple task, for others it can cause undue stress - fretting about what is appropriate, professional, comfortable and most importantly, currently clean.
What if I told you there is a simple way to make this morning stress disappear?
There is - uniforms.
And it’s not only the morning routine that uniforms can benefit. Wearing a uniform to work can positively affect thought processes all day, in many ways...
1. Gives you a role to fill
Wearing a uniform clearly denotes the role you have within an organisation and therefore serves as a constant reminder of the responsibilities that accompany your position. It requires that you live up to the standards of the organisation you are so clearly representing. Putting on a uniform may change the way you hold yourself, the way you conduct yourself or your self-perceived level of ability.
2. Reduces decision fatigue
Every decision we make in the day, no matter how big or small takes a certain amount of brain power. The more decisions you make, the more likely you are to experience decision fatigue.
If you don't have a uniform you can put on without thinking in the morning, you're immediately using up valuable brain power on something as small as choosing an outfit. Avoiding this one small decision everyday might help you to save your energy for more important business related decisions.
3. Increases abstract thinking capability
For those working in corporate environments, wearing formal business attire can be especially helpful as it increases abstract thinking - an important aspect of creativity and long-term strategizing.
Wearing formal business attire is related to feelings of power which are thought to increase abstract thinking.
4. Encourages positive perceptions
When people don’t know you, they don’t have much to judge your ability on - aside from looks.
As a result, people often judge others by what they are wearing.
Judgments will generally be more favourable when the image they are presented with matches their preconceived notion of what that person should look like, eg. a surgeon wearing scrubs.
5. Improves self belief and capability
Uniforms can instill you with the confidence you need to get a certain job done.
For example, when putting on a uniform a soldier may feel that they now have the confidence to fight on a battlefield, or for a surgeon, putting on scrubs may be the signal for their brain that it is time to focus so they can successfully perform an operation.
In certain situations, uniform can shape identity almost entirely.