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Cracking the Confusing Silicon Valley Dress Code

Photo of Marissa Mayer via <a href="http://www.vogue.com/magazine/article/hail-to-the-chief-yahoos-marissa-mayer/#1">Vogue</a>
Photo of Marissa Mayer via Vogue

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Silicon Valley's lack of dress code doesn't exactly translate into carefree styling. Multiple sources in the startup space tell us that an applicant's outfit will most certainly be under scrutiny at an interview. Suits are a definite no-no but so are flip-flops and shorts. San Jose branding consultant Joseph Rosenfeld tells the Chronicle that he advises clients to dress depending on position—meaning, engineers should dress one way and those in marketing should dress in another. And Allison Kluger tells her Stanford Business School students:

"If what you're wearing is going to garner more than a moment's notice, you're probably wearing something inappropriate. You don't want something to distract people from why you're there, which is to do the job. You don't need that extra battle."

This may be the underlying reason why we're starting to see a new uniform crop up in the tech scene. The zip-up hoodie is still around, but a drive down Palo Alto's University Avenue will reveal a growing trend of fitted jeans, button-ups, and casual jackets for both genders. Yahoo's CEO Marissa Mayer and a few other female venture capitalists may be the exception.
· Women are hacking the tech dress code [San Francisco Chronicle]
· What to Wear on a Silicon Valley Date [Racked SF]