Employee Uniforms and 2017: Will You Follow, or Lead, the Trends?

restaurant uniforms for employees

Well, here it is 2017. An exciting year for so many reasons.  A new (and very controversial) President, one hundred years since the Russian Revolution, an “odd” year (they seem to always come after an “even” year)… we could go on and on. Employee UniformsBut for those of us in the employee uniform industry, a new year is always an exciting event. It’s time to look back at the trends of the previous years, and look forward to the new trends of 2017. In fact, we can advise anyone looking for employee uniform ideas to “look forward” to the New Year, and we don’t mean just “look forward” like having fun. We mean “look forward” to being THE uniform trendsetter in your industry. You can follow, or you can lead. It’s your choice.

Some things to think about as you look at your employee uniforms trends for 2017.

  • Colors, colors, colors. Do you want to go with “earth” tones, or with something more brassy? Colors shift through the years – with the 1970s being the era of the Avocado green, and the 2000s being a more “brassy” look. Look around your industry, look “back” to the past in your industry, and be different!  If your industry is into earth colors, explore uniforms that are different – metallics, reds, blues…  Be different!
  • Consistency. Are your employee uniforms consistent? Does the “back of the house” look like the “front of the house?” You can be 100% consistent, or you can be complementary. Sometimes it’s pretty cool for the waiter or waitress to look one way, and the busboy or busgirl to look quite different. You can be consistent 100% or your can be complementary. But you should “have a plan” vs. just “letting things happen.”
  • Fabrics. You can be 100% natural, all cotton for example, or you can put in Spandex or even the new polyester blends. Again, is the look and feel of your restaurant, casino, bar or other establishment an “earth tone” (think cotton), or is it a man-made tone (think Spandex or polyester). The exciting thing about employee uniforms is that there isn’t a “right” answer, or a “wrong” answer… there’s just YOUR answer. What is it? Reach out to one of our employee uniform idea consultants, who are happy to help you brainstorm uniform ideas.

Other concepts.  Failing to plan is planning to fail. That’s always a good one to think about as the New Year turns. You can either pro-actively think of the brand image that you want your employees and their uniforms to project, or you can be passive and “let it just happen.” But… either way, you’re making a choice. Not choosing is choosing.  Gosh, this sounds like a Zen koan, doesn’t it. But it’s true: “Failing to plan is planning to fail.”

Sizzle or steak?  Or sizzle AND steak. Take a restaurant and the need for restaurant uniforms, for example. YES it matters a great deal that the food be superb. This goes for a cheap eatery or a fancy high-end restaurant. But presentation matters – a lot. How is the food presented? And by whom? And what does that person look like? Your employee uniforms are part of the ambiance of your restaurant – part of the “sizzle” and not the “steak.” But – again to be Zen koan on you – it’s not an OR, it’s an AND. The truly great establishments brainstorm everything from how the employees look (e.g., uniforms) to how they act (“customer service”) to the actual product. This goes as much for a casino as a restaurant, as much for an auto repair shop as for a hair transplant clinic. How your employees look sets the tone.

So, in summary, as we begin 2017… it’s a great time for you to be the TRENDSETTER and not the pathetic trend FOLLOWER. Reach out to us, today, for a consultation on employee uniform ideas. For qualified accounts, we also send out free uniform samples. Happy 2017 – it’s going to be a great year!