Communications

White House Unbutton Formal Dress Code ( Yahoo Company)

Pres. Barack Obama has brought significant changes in the formal work environment that is apparent in the White House. Members of the Oval Office have been accustomed to the suit and tie attire that is required by Pres. George W. Bush during his administration. Described by presidential adviser David Gergen as ‘Aloha Zen,’ Pres. Obama certainly has brought a new flare to the way things are run in Washington (Stolberg, 2009, p.258). The distinctions made in the article between Bush and Obama illustrates the strict formal working environment during the former administration compared to the loose and casual observance in the new presidency. The contrast between the two is very apparent as Bush was a Republican president who is accustomed to living in the White House during his father’s presidency. While Obama does not come from a political family and grew up in a typical single household family in the tropical island of Hawaii no less. Obama’s penchant for warm weather also comes apparent in the casual way he dresses which he extended to his staff through ‘business casual’ weekends (ibid). Ultimately, the attitude of the head of the organization defines the policies and concurrent work environment implemented. The members assimilate to what is expected of them and on how they conduct themselves The atmosphere of casualness in the current White House can be compared to the general notion of the working environment of Yahoo! Corporation. Initially, Yahoo! Has received a lot of press exposure through their founders, Jerry and David, who became the main selling point of the company’s image because of their laidback attitude and clothing. They have been described as two guys who wear cut-offs and go barefoot (Carpenter, 2000, p.259). The human interest over the duo became the main focus that the press has immersed itself with. They have become the epitome of Yahoo! as a company and how business is done in the company. To veer away from what has seemed to be a too casual representation of the company their branding also inserted elements of establishing it as an effective enterprise. They have continued to work with the press in informing what they have been up to in order to reach the specific target markets that they are pushing for (ibid, p.160). Interestingly enough, the employees are referred to as Yahoos in the company’s Code of Ethics. This Code provides perhaps one of the most interesting ethical guides for any company. Under ‘Our Values’ of the Yahoo! Code of Ethics (2011, p.4) they included ‘Fun’ elaborated in the following principles: • We believe humor is essential to success. • We applaud irreverence and don’t take ourselves too seriously. • We celebrate achievement. • We yodel. Yahoo! maintains a fun working environment by encouraging its employees to adopt a casual attitude in their work while maintaining a creative atmosphere. In recent development through its new high profile CEO Marissa Mayer, the company has opted to forego of its work-from-home policy and revert to encouraging the value of the workplace. The advent of remote work had been promoted as an alternative to the traditional office seen as a productive counterpart to water-cooler talks and cubicle banter (Silverman and Fottrell, 2013). This shift to home-based work by Yahoo! employees is now brought to an end by Mayer with their Chief for Human Resources Jackie Reses promoting the necessity of physical togetherness. He states through a memo, Some of the best decisions and insights come from hallway and cafeteria discussions, meeting new people, and impromptu team meetings (as cited by Keller, 2013, para.3). This may be seen differently by people who either favor it or sees it as an uncalled reversion to traditional management. However, the importance of human connection and personal interaction cannot be dismissed in a field that requires productivity and constant teamwork. Compared to the watered down formal dress code in the White House, Yahoo! has continued to maintain a non-restrictive work environment for its employees. Nonetheless, considering the nature and the inherently stern job description that entails being employed in the seat of power of the United States government, Pres. Obama’s ‘unbuttoning’ of the formal dress code and strict as scheduled policy, allows for the cultivation of a new dynamic working environment. Yahoo! is significantly informal when it comes to employee policies as it had always been from the time it was founded. The substantial difference fundamentally lies on its efforts to maintain a perception that it is a well-organized corporation run by competent people. Evidently, the work environment in these two organizations is greatly shaped by the leaders that enforce the standing code of conduct, written or unwritten. Bibliography Carpenter, P. (2000). Ebrands: Building an internet business at breakneck speed. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Press. Retrieved from http://books.google.com.ph/books?id=Dz36eDndrIsCamp.pg=PA161amp.dq=yahoowork+environmentamp.hl=enamp.sa=Xamp.ei=oa59UeylBu6YiAe94oGgCQamp.redir_esc=y#v=onepageamp.q=yahoowork%20environmentamp.f=false Keller, E. (2013). Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer’s work-from-home memo is from bygone era. The Guardian. Retrieved April 28, 2013, from http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/feb/26/yahoo-ceo-marissa-mayer-memo-telecomute Silverman, R. and Fottrell, Q. (2013). The home office in the spotlight . The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved April 28, 2013, from http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323384604578328681101539330.html Stolberg, S.G. (2009).White House unbuttons formal dress code. In F. Moshiri, Management communications: An anthology (pp. 257-259). San Diego, CA: Cognella Academic Publishing. Yahoo!. (2011). Winning with integrity: Yahoo!’s code of ethics. Retrieved April 28, 2013, from zttp://files.shareholder.com/downloads/YHOO/660619262x0x239565/4f32ddd0-82e5-47c2-ac71-75403ebbb404/

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