Being professional in the workplace seems to always be a must, but where does the field service environment stand on tattoos. A client always wants to know they have a professional that will get the job done with minimal downtime. After all, time is money. They want to know these individuals will work seamlessly with their work staff and their existing customers. After all, they worry about their reputation as well. Their customers could be anyone from a patient in a hospital to a customer in the local convenient store. So, what is the stance on tattoos?
- A big NO would be a tattoo that is offensive such as an obscene gesture, or something sexual or racial in nature.
- What if it is none of the above but is extremely noticeable like the tattoo Mike Tyson has on the side of his face? Is this acceptable?
- Tattoos may be your way of expression, but must they be hidden?
- It is not that long ago that any tattoo was associated with the lower class of society.
That view has shifted greatly in modern times. As more and more millennials get tattoos it seems commonplace and perhaps this has given society used to seeing it. Or maybe it is truly generational. Grandparents today would have far fewer tattoos than the grandparents of tomorrow. What was once outlandish perhaps doesn’t seem that way today.
A hiring manager may have concerns with seeing tattoos. Will other workers and customers be accepting? Does this make the manager sway their opinion in a position where they have two good candidates and one has no tattoos? One would hope the best person gets the position regardless.
Then comes the question of what to do when employees have tattoos and are customer facing. A lot of companies have dress codes that may require the tattoos to be covered. This may be an across the board decision or on a case-by-case basis. One customer may find all tattoos offensive and request that they always be covered. They are the paying customer after all and companies most certainly will oblige.
The debate will probably continue, and perhaps another 60 years goes by and we view this in a completely different way. Deep thought may serve field service workers the best. One may not know the future or where your travels may take you. That also plays a part, but being able to easily cover tattoos may be a must or it may not matter. But in the end, the customer will decide and the companies that employ field service personnel will always ensure their clients get what they want. So, before you get that large visible tattoo, consider how it may affect your future.