Last month, Starbucks has announced big changes to its dress code policy. It now allows customer-facing employees to display their tattoos and piercings everywhere except on their faces whereas before they had to hide them under their clothing.
Dress codes have also made less strict to allow more expression in accessories like scarves for example.
We do question ourselves why is Starbucks doing these changes and what is the strategy behind this HR move?
Customers are looking for the genuine and the authentic
Nowadays consumers are searching for a well-built value of the genuine that they seek from a brand. According to Micah Solomon, a customer service consultant, “clients who allow their employees self-expression on the job–in language, clothing, and, yes, tattoos–are better able to deliver a genuine customer experience that connects with the customer”…
Letting employees express their personal style, tats and all
If employers let their employees work in their own style, they will be able to show their customers how genuine their brand is. Today’s customers including the millennial generation express their own style through their clothing, tattoos, and hairstyles and they will be ok with your employees doing the same. According to As Tim Miller, a customer service designer, “in a customer-facing business you should strive for a visible symbiosis between the people working at your establishment because it fits their lifestyle, and the customers doing business with you because it fits their lifestyle”.
The best employees are not just the ones without tattoos and piercing…
Employees with the possibility to be great all have in common certain key personality characters like warmness, empathy, teamwork, assiduousness and optimism, but what they don’t share is a specific appearance. Employers look for great employees not necessarily Harvard graduated (many times these are precisely the types of employees you want to avoid because they come with a certain attitude), for employees with the potential to be good in all the empathetic and creative ways that a customer-facing employee should have.
Overcome your hiring reticence
Don’t get confused by some studies showing that, all things being equal, an untattooed and unpierced employee is better viewed by customers than the one who has none of these. All employees are not equal and sometimes tattooed employees can give far better results than the non-tattooed ones.