A good friend of mine sent this heartrending e-mail today:
"Apropos of nothing - everyone in my office was supposed to dress up today in '70s wear. I am currently sporting bell bottoms, this little orange & brown shirt, a Farrah Fawcett wig & platform shoes. I am the only person in my ENTIRE office who came in costume. I have no love for anyone right now...."
She followed up by e-mailing a picture of herself that confirms the above description. Her expression as captured by the photo was pained.
Her sad tale reminded me of various former Inc. employees who have worn costumes to the office over the years I've worked here: the reporter who wore roller skates and served smoothies from a tray, the payroll guy who dressed up as a "Payday" candy bar, the gaggle of witches in the art department. On the radio this morning, I heard a retail analyst say that the growth of Halloween sales was tied to the fact that more and more adults are celebrating the holiday. Most of this celebrating takes place at parties, I would think, but at least some it seems to be spilling over to the wokplace.
So my question to you is: Do people at your company dress up for Halloween? If so, how many? Have you ever had one token person arrive at work, like my poor friend, only to discover that they alone are costumed? Do you encourage costumes at work, or discourage them--and what's your reasoning?
Last updated: Oct 31, 2006
MIKE HOFMAN was previously editor of Inc.com and a deputy editor at Inc. magazine, which he joined in 1996. The site was nominated for a National Magazine Award for Digital Media in 2010, and was named the best business website by Folio Magazine. In 2006, Hofman was part of a team of writers nominated for a Webby Award for best business blog. He lives in New York City. @mikehofman