A bad case of PR Survey

10 Nov
A recent survey conducted by Persil Colour has left me feeling a little uncomfortable. The survey quizzed working mums about their clothes and here are a few astonishing highlights:
  • Mums returning to an office full of singletons feel ‘dowdy’, ‘undervalued’ and ‘intimidated’;
  • 26 per cent said they would feel more confident in their approach to work if they ‘looked better’;
  • 60 per cent said a roomful of women created lots of competition when it came to the working wardrobe;
  • 44 per cent of women admitted to feeling very self-conscious in the clothes they wear to the office and feel completely stuck in a rut when it comes to fashion;
  •  Over a third of working mums said they were really envious of their single colleagues who are often more stylish and get further in their careers as a result.
I could continue down this line of very depressing results. There are many questions this survey throws up; why do working mums – already leading a stressful and hectic life – feel like this? Why would other women in the workplace make another woman feel this way? What kind of world do we live in that allows your clothes and not your ability to dictate how far you get in your career? But I somehow get the impression that the wording of these questions may have had a strong influence on these results. So, my main ‘beef’ with this survey is not what the respondents said (or were lead to say), but with Persil Colour.
What lead them to conduct a survey that ultimately portrays working mums – in fact all women in the workplace – as insecure, unprofessional, catty and stupid. I doubt I am alone as both a mum and a working woman in saying that while it is important to dress appropriately at work, I have bigger issues to contend with than whether I’m wearing the latest shade of blue. I love shopping as much as the next girl, but I do it for me, and no one else. I certainly don’t live in a world where I’d be passed up for a promotion in favour of someone wearing newer Kurt Geigers.
This to me is a case of PR survey gone very wrong. I’d love to see the survey questions that produced such results!

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