Why I wear a tie to work

I feel fortunate to be employed at a place where people have worked collaboratively since 1855 to advance education, research, and innovation in ways that shape and change our world. Each morning, I drive 79 miles from my home in Kalamazoo, MI to a place that is vibrant with tradition, culture, and a sense of purpose. Each of my colleagues and the leaders of our organization endeavor to do their best every day.

I believe that it is important to respect and honor those I encounter. I’m thankful that my teachers in high school took the time to teach me that one of the ways I can show respect is to be deliberate in the design and selection of my attire. For me, dressing in sneakers, shorts, and a t-shirt doesn’t show how I feel about my organization, colleagues, or the people we serve. I choose to wear brown or black leather shoes, wool blend trousers, a button down shirt, and a tie.

No one at work told me that I must wear a tie — it is something I choose to do because I believe it is right for me. In addition, wearing a tie feels like a small way for me to walk in the footsteps of my heros who inspire me with their grace, kindness, and patience.

Wearing a tie doesn’t make me a better person. Also, the attire I choose to wear doesn’t entitle me to judge others or for others to judge me. The tie is just my way of expressing that I care about and respect you as another human being. So, I hope when you see me in a tie you smile — you’re in on “the secret” and know its not just about putting some fancy cloth round my neck each morning in order to be “in,” “elite,” or “cool.”

One Response

  1. Scot July 28, 2011

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

six − two =