To better understand the attitudes toward the hybrid work environment we’ll enter this Fall — lululemon commissioned an 11-market global survey, which just launched today. 

With return-to-work plans continuing to shift amidst the ever-changing state of the pandemic (66% of companies are delaying office re-openings due to COVID variants*), and companies doubling down on hybrid plans, lululemon’s newest study reveals some interesting attitudes on how the world views the culture of attire—especially with the future of the workplace. The findings of this study reveal the significance of workwear comfort in this “next normal” and beyond and reinforce lululemon’s longstanding belief that when you feel your best, you perform your best—not only when you’re working out, but also in the workplace.

Notably, of the more than 20,000 individuals surveyed (methodology below my signature), 96% say comfort is important in their clothing, being named the most important attribute in every market. And 4 in 5 of those returning to the professional environment hope casual clothing becomes more common in the workplace (81%).

Key global findings show that more functional, comfortable attire:

  • Improves Performance: 8 in 10 (81%) say they perform better at work when they are dressed comfortably; the majority of adults want employers to recognize that the quality of work employees deliver is more important than their clothing (86%).
    • Close to 2 in 5 Millennials in Canada would consider leaving their job if their employer made them dress professionally again (36%).
  • Increases Loyalty: More than one third of Millennials would consider leaving their job if their employer made them dress professionally again (38%).
    • In the US and Canada, this number is higher amongst Millennial men, with 56% and 51%, respectively. 
  • Creates Connection: 3 in 4 (76%) feel casual dress codes in the workplace help people get to know each other in a more genuine way.
  • Fuels Confidence: 3 in 4 (75%) say the clothes they wear impact how confident they feel, and 96% say comfort is important to them.
  • Inspires Employee Respect: Over 4 in 5 (84%) respect companies that allow their employees to wear casual clothing to work.
  • Intersects with Style: 3 in 4 (74%) do not want to choose between feeling comfortable and looking good in their clothing.
  • Supports Versatility: Among adults returning to their previous workspaces, 82% will start shopping for clothes they can wear both at work and outside of work.

“In many ways, both working from home and this ‘next normal’ of a hybrid work environment have amplified what lululemon has been designing for all along—versatile, distraction-free garments that move with you through changing conditions and activities, making the wearer feel confident and looking sharp,” said Ben Stubbington, Senior Vice President, Design, lululemon. “The success and the current  strength of lululemon’s iconic ABC Pant, as well as several other key styles, highlight how consumers are  shopping for functional, versatile items that don’t sacrifice on style.” 

The brand’s back-to-work and back-to-life designs, which include the ABC Pant, Commission Pant, the brand’s new Venture Blazer and its City Sleek Wide-Leg Pant and Cotton-Blend Twill Trouser, offer classic yet relaxed fits, tailored details, and high-performing fabrics ideal for the “new” workplace—and as consumers move between home, the gym, the commute, the office and more.