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A razor and an iron


I come from a customer service background, primarily in food and beverage. Restaurant companies are serious when it comes to not only the cleanliness of their shops but also a clean, presentable staff.

Companies in the 1970s and 1980s had dress and grooming guidelines. If you wanted a job you wore the uniform or you cut your hair or you covered your tattoos. A number of high profile court cases put the scotch on such rules. And it shows these days.

Far from a crotchedy ol’ man, I find myself railing (in my mind) against the standards so many businesses seem to have adopted these days when it comes to how they allow their employees to appear.

Back in the 1960s parents and older people wanted to chase after and cut the ‘hippie’ hair of kids. Meh…hair styles come and go. I find I want to chase after employees with a razor. I think to myself: commit to a beard fully or drop the whole thing and shave. The employee with a quarter inch, spotty beard, is a not a paragon of fashion or hipness in my book. Not every person who can grow some hair on their face should have a beard; mostly it just looks unkempt and sends a message that they don’t much care about personal grooming.

I also find myself wanting to chase after some of the employees I see working in customer service with a good steam iron. Wrinkles equal carelessness.

I understand an employee guidebook that allows beards, but I don’t understand where—in any employee manual—that it is perfectly acceptable to look like a slob. Wearing casual clothes when one works at Google or Uber is fine, wearing wrinkled clothes while serving fast food or working in a deli is quite another.

Can the managers of the world tighten up their grooming standards? Please?

(Lyndon Zaitz is publisher of the Keizertimes.)