Page 5 - BusinessWest December 12, 2022
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 more acceptable now, especially after COVID.”
As a law firm with five offices, Bacon Wilson’s workplace poli-
cies are generally driven by the main office in Springfield, Man- aging Shareholder Ken Albano said.
“We have a policy that’s been tweaked over the years. Now, business casual is acceptable throughout the firm. You don’t have to wear a sport coat. Corduroys, a gray sweater, and a button- down shirt — that’s my dress today. That’s deemed acceptable; I’d call that country casual or business casual. Wearing a sport coat every day is no longer required.
“That said, we’ve got old-school people here who just can’t change,” he went on. “They come to work in a suit every day. Even given the opportunity to loosen up their attire, they stick to it, especially some of the older guys in the Estate Planning
 Melissa English says workers have shown they can be both comfortable and productive at work.
department who meet clients daily and like to wear a suit and tie when they sit down with clients.”
He agreed that employees returning from long stretches of remote work, where they could get their job done in pajamas some days, grew to enjoy the comfort of casual dress, and the firm’s policy preserves elements of that while stressing appropri- ate wear.
“I want to be comfortable when I’m working, and I think a lot of people feel that way. I think you’re more productive if you’re comfortable throughout the day. So I do think it was already moving toward business casual, but COVID definitely pushed it.”
“For a law firm of this size,” Albano said, “we try to be as flexi- ble as we can without taking it too far away from the professional setting we’re trying to establish for our clients.”
Loosening Up
Casual dress has long been the norm in technology workplac- es, and that revolution eventually spread to other, more tradition- ally formal workplaces in fields like law, accounting, and insur-
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