Summer internships can be extremely helpful in making the right connections for future grads but you kind of have to know your place. That’s a lesson a group of interns learned the hard way when they approached their manager requesting leniency in the company’s very strict dress code.
A blog posted on askmanager.com shared a story of an individual who had scored an internship at a company within the field the student hoped to pursue after graduation. The intern explained the position did not involve direct contact with clients or customers but despite that all employees and interns were required to adhere to a very strict dress code. This was something most of the interns felt was ‘overly strict’ but didn’t want to complain about. That is until the intern noticed one of the employees wearing casual shoes that didn’t fall in line with what the company expected.
Feeling that wasn’t fair this individual gathered all the interns together, all but one who refused to go along, and wrote up a proposal and petitioned the manager to allow them to wear non-dress shoes and to follow a more business casual dress code without having to wear suits or blazers.
The next day all of the interns who signed the petition were called into a meeting and informed they were being let go due to their “unprofessional behaviour”. One of the managers also told them the one employee seen wearing casual shoes was a former soldier who lost her leg and was therefore allowed to wear whatever shoes she wanted.
The intern who started the petition in the first place was upset that they were never told about the soldier otherwise they would have factored that in to their proposal and was upset they weren’t even allowed to defend their actions.
Anyone think the company didn’t handle it the right way?