It sounds kind of funny to say, but your corporate clothing says a lot about you. Let take a moment to think about what happens when you buy your team cheap, uncomfortable polo shirts to wear:
1. They Itch
Shirts made out of cheap materials don breath well. This leads to a lot of itching and fidgeting and discomfort. Your team can wear a t-shirt underneath, but on a hot day that going to lead to a lot of sweating, which isn much better. The last thing you need is a salesperson who won stop scratching their armpits. This sounds like a joke, but it serious: cheaply made, uncomfortable polo shirts can make your team look and feel awkward.
2. They Wear Out
It makes more sense in the long run to buy nice shirts that will last rather than cheap shirts that need to be replaced. A pricier polo shirt will cost a little more up front, but it will be a lot longer before it needs to be replaced, and it won fray and wear as quickly. This last point is important because nothing looks less professional than a salesperson wearing a torn, ripped polo shirt.
3. Employees Won Always Wear Them
A lot of pizza delivery people take their polo shirts off as soon as theye out of sight of their boss. If the shirts you give your employees to wear are uncomfortable, itchy, ugly and cheap, then your employees are probably going to want to take them off whenever they get a chance. Some employers do random checks on their employees to see if theye in uniform, but that really not as reasonable a solution as just giving your people shirts that they can be proud to wear.
The issue with corporate clothing often reflects issues with the corporation itself. If you run a team where you just treat your employees like trained monkeys, if you treat them with disrespect and you don put forth every effort to make them feel like a valuable part of the team, then theye not going to wear the shirt. Theye not going to put forth their best effort and theye not going to hang around for very long if you don give them their due respect.
Part of respecting your employees is outfitting them with clothing that they can be proud to wear, clothing that you can be proud to put your logo on. You can get a good stockpile of well made polo shirts for your current and future employees for far less than you might think, so there really no excuse to cheap out and give them shirts that feel like burlap sacks with collars.
The question at the end of the day is not whether or not you are buying your team the right clothing, but whether or not theye really your team, or just your lackeys. Treat human beings like lackeys and they will give you the same minimal effort you can expect from lackeys. Treat them like a team, draw on their strengths, give them opportunities and challenges worthy of their respective expertise and they will shine for you. Give them room to try, a safety net for when they fail, and encouragement to keep trying and they will surprise you, but it all starts with respect, and giving them comfortable clothes to wear is a pretty basic step to that end.
The author has an interest in corporate clothing but doesn claim to be an expert – however, if you need real expert advice and help on corporate and promotional clothing the people at http://clubrowcreations.co.uk are held in high regard, have had some great reviews, and come highly recommended.