A very wise man (who, fortunately for me, sits next to me every day) once said to me that staff shouldn’t wear a ‘uniform’, but a ‘costume’ for their daily ‘performance’; borrowed from Disneyland and their unique modus operandi. Let me ask you – do you and your staff wear a uniform, or
Uniforms are one of those things that normally don’t receive a great deal of thought. People need to be identified so it’s a simple as a logo on a shirt, or in some cases a recommended dress code. While doing some spring cleaning at your office this month, take a strategic stand point and have a look at your uniforms. What message do they portray about your company? What perceptions do they create?
While entering a bank is not always a positive experience, one thing I do enjoy is the way you walk into their ‘world’. Bank staff truly do wear a ‘costume’. I love that they wear branded scarves, corporate coloured hair ties and matching shoes. I love that you can identify which bank they work for when they’re walking down the street. Much like flight attendants and the wonderful way in which they present themselves. The pride in their appearance simply emanates from them, and as such, is why the profession has received the glamorous reputation that it has.
For banks and airlines, their costumes are a very important part of their marketing strategy, and they do a superb job.
Some unique operators in the tourism industry have wonderful ‘costumes’, and you may recall me discussing this in a previous blog about an experience with a tour company in the Whitsundays.
Unfortunately, our major supermarkets don’t rate so highly on the ‘costume’ scale. Sure they have a uniform, and I’m not criticising the colour, style or shape. But they don’t have a ‘costume’. Next time you’re doing your weekly shop, or grabbing some milk, take a look around and consider whether you believe anyone to be wearing a ‘costume’.
‘Costumes’ aren’t about putting your logo all over every piece of clothing your people wear. It’s about corporate culture. It’s about the message you want to communicate to your customers (and the general public) with your people as the vehicle. It’s about how you want your employees to ‘perform’ when they are in ‘costume’.
I would like to make a special mention of a wonderful team of local volunteers who formed part of the ‘ CinéfestOZ movie crew‘; a prime example of people wearing a ‘costume’ with immense pride. Thankyou all for a