It’s dangerous for men to weigh in on women’s professional dress. To be sure, many people hate dress codes, no matter who imparts the information.
When it comes to setting and enforcing dress codes in the workplace, it isn’t the message but the messenger. What might sound like a mentor’s advice coming from a woman can feel like oppression coming from a man. This is because what we are really dealing with here is power–the power of executives, who are often men, to inflict attitudes toward dress, professionalism and sexuality on subordinates, who are often women.
Yet, learning the dress code of a workplace is a normal part of professional growth. When male managers avoid communicating with women employees, women are left unaware of unwritten rules.