The concept of corporations is a fascinating paradox the evolving business world has continuously revisited. Most successful ones start small with one or two innovative ideas, and grow to be giant players which take extra measures to stay current and relevant. They provide promising futures for the young and starting, but can also inhibit the young and entrepreneurial. It boils down to the tradeoff between experience and individualism; unless one is a genius (which perhaps too many of us think we are), a sacrifice on our ends is worth our time, as long as we don’t get too engulfed in it.
As someone who has worked small-medium startups to multi-national corporations, I can certainly say that my times at larger firms were much more fruitful. There, I met more types of people who were for most parts, hired for a reason. But of course with the tradeoff of having to stick to more rules, both explicit and unspoken, and the most obvious one being fashion choice. Previously, I talked about how fashion is an exercisable right, and yes it still applies, but perhaps not for the first couple of days or even weeks at a new company.
Learning to navigate the corporate scene includes 1) fitting in and 2) still finding a way to express yourself reasonably. For me that means dressing conservatively early on, but gradually transitioning into toned down versions of what I really want to wear. It takes an incremental approach to find yourself in a big setting; just don’t let groupthink restrict who you are and who you want to be. You might only be one of thousands, but being that one different character could serve you well. Too many times I’ve observed people lose their personalities completely, thinking that’s the only way to the top. By then, it’s already too late to claim your sovereign self back. So always keep one eye open as to realizing what’s best for your personal and professional development.
Corporate Blue Shirt: You can find it anywhere
Denim: G Star Raw
Slip-On’s: French Connection