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Thursday, 05 July 2012 17:31

Dress Code in U.S.

In the United States, the work environment is professional and causal as well. Don’t be surprised if you see people bring their pets to work! The work culture and dress code in U.S. is different.

People prefer to dress casually (unless the company policy states otherwise), work schedules are flexible and overall the work atmosphere is informal. If you have recently moved to the U.S. you will find the following pointers useful.

  • Dress code for men
  • Dress code for women

Dress code for men

Most American companies expect their employees to maintain a dress code. A detailed description of what type of dress is expected will be made clear to you when you begin work. If you are on a business visit (a meeting or finalizing a deal), a suit is the most appropriate attire. A light-colored collared shirt, a matching necktie, and formal leather shoes look smart. Dark-colored suits look presentable and are the norm at most conferences.

Some offices or places of business require suits for men, and dresses and hosiery for women. If your workplace follows this dress code, denim of any type would not be appropriate.

Information Technology companies have a very casual dress code. Jeans, T-shirts, trousers, khakis, and cotton shirts are acceptable even on weekdays. In other industries, Friday is a day to dress down, and even Bermudas and shorts are allowed. Socks should be worn at all the times in the workplace. Though your clothes need not be expensive or fashionably cut, they must be clean and well ironed. Neatness is very important. Take care of your hair, teeth and personal hygiene. Carry deodorant and mouth freshener with you; you will find that some people even brush their teeth in the office after lunch.

Formal Wear

If you are on a business visit, suit is the most appropriate and preferred business formal. A suit with a light color collared shirt, a matching necktie, and a formal leather shoe is what makes a perfect business formal dress. Suits of dark color like black, navy blue, gray or brown are most common, and are conventionally considered as perfect business formals.

Tips

  • Wear belts that match your outfits.
  • Try to wear nice shoes and belts, and also nice quality shirts/tees.
  • Wear fresh pair of socks and clean shoes.
  • If you carry lunch to office get a good lunch box.
  • Carry a good office bag to your office. A good leather bag or a laptop bag is most convenient.
  • Maintain your clothes by regular washing, dry cleaning, laundering, and ironing.
  • You can purchase a good suit at Macy’s, Nordstrom, Express, Gap, Banana Republic or any other good men’s store. These stores also have a good variety of casual wear.

Dress code for women

Women are also expected to maintain a dress code. If the dress code is casual, then you have a wide choice. In IT companies, women wear jeans, casual pants, shirts, T-shirts, blouses, skirts, trousers, dresses, shorts, sweater sets, and blazers. Try not to wear traditional Indian wear like saris or salwar suits. You will feel out of place. However, Indian tops can be worn with jeans. You can complete the look with a complimenting bag and jewelry.

Conservative athletic running, or walking shoes, sneakers, boots, flats, and leather shoes are fine at work. Women are discouraged to wear flashy shoes or open-toe shoes in office. In some industries, it is a must to wear closed toe and closed heel shoes. Some business places require women to wear business suits, jackets or trousers. Business suits can be worn with a matching or contrasting blouse. With short skirts, one must wear stockings underneath, along with high-heeled sandals.

Tips

  • Usually women must wear closed high-heeled shoes.
  • Wear limited jewelry. Avoid flashy and chunky jewelry.
  • Choose a handbag or purse to match your outfits. Shades of black and brown compliment almost any color.
  • Hair should be styled, cut, shampooed and conditioned.
  • Pay attention to your hands and nails. Remove peeled or chipped nail polish. Makeup should be minimal.
  • Wear mild perfume. Deodorants are a must, as they help keeping body odor at bay.
  • You can purchase women’s apparel at Macy’s, Nordstrom, Express, Gap, Banana Republic, Ann Taylor, Talbot, New York & Company or any other good women’s store. These stores also have a good variety of casual wear.
  • For accessories you can shop at Aldo, H&M, Forever 21, Old Navy, etc.

The key to dress well is to ‘dress right’. Try not to overdress or under dress-this will make you feel out of place and awkward. Follow the dress code at your workplace. If you have recently moved the country on the H1 visa you will realize sooner or later that some wardrobe makeover is needed.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 11 July 2012 15:50
 
Locating a Restaurant in UK PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 05 July 2012 17:04

Locating a Restaurant in USA

If you are hungry and do not find time to cook don't worry: there are many restaurants and fast food chains throughout USA. Some of the popular ones are Denny's (Open 24 hours), KFC, Burger King, Mc Donald's, Pizza Hut, Carl's Jr., Sub-way, etc. You will also find different cuisines in local restaurants: Mexican Restaurants, Italian Restaurants, Indian Restaurants, and Chinese Restaurants etc.

Tips for ordering food

  • Don't hesitate to ask and find out what is in the dish before you order. At the restaurants, you won't get finger bowl. You can use paper napkins.
  • At the Indian restaurants, usually you can order "Thali" or "A La Carte". Both of them are served with some side dishes. Places with buffet are comparatively cheaper to Ala Carte. This is not an absolute rule and prices may vary.
  • At fast food joints and restaurants, you would be asked if the food is for "here" or "to go?”. "Here" means that food will be served in the restaurant and "to go" means that food will be packed.
  • At most American restaurants, it is a custom to tip the server (not waiter). People tip a sum of 10% of the check (not bill).
  • At buffets, it is a custom to use a fresh plate for each next serving. Once you have finished eating, leave the plate on at the table itself and get a fresh plate for the next serving. The server will pick up the old plate.
  • At any Dine-in place, don't go and occupy any empty table yourself. Wait at the front desk and someone would assist you to get seated.
  • When you want a drink without ice, specify "No Ice" and not "Without Ice".
  • Are you a Vegetarian? Just be careful while ordering to specify "no meat"
  • and do not use words like "without meat", "meat-less" as they don't understand these terms.
  • Some of the Indian Restaurants do not accept debit/credit cards, for example, in New York City there are many Indian restaurants that accept cash only. Do not be embarrassed to ask what credit cards are accepted at a restaurant. Normally you will find the names or signs of cards accepted at the front desk of a restaurant.
  • If you are ordering soup do mention that you want a vegetable stock and not the chicken stock in your soup. Most soups in American kitchen are prepared with chicken stock.
  • Some vegetables have different names in the USA. For example ‘ladyfinger’ is called 'okra'. Similarly, ‘brinjals’ are known as ‘eggplants’. Understanding the vegetable names will help you to know what you are ordering.
  • If you are confused about an item in the dish, ask if it is a vegetarian ingredient or not.

Tips for locating a restaurant

  • Ask your friends and family to suggest names of good local restaurants to you.
  • Normally all the malls have a ‘food court’ with different food and coffee shops.
  • Search for restaurants on Google Maps. You can type keywords like ‘Indian restaurant’ near xyz zip code or your address. Search the restaurant name on Yelp to look at reviews posted by other restaurant-goers.
  • For cars with built in GPS you can also check for ‘Zagat’ ratings for a particular restaurant. If you have not installed ‘Zagat’ on the GPS look for other sources of ratings on your GPS. Alternatively, if you have a smart phone like IPhone, Blackberry, Droid, etc you can quickly check restaurant locations and ratings anywhere.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 11 July 2012 15:50
 
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