Barclays boss John McFarlane has banned flip-flops in a bid to smarten up the bank’s corporate culture, it emerged yesterday.
The Scots-born chairman, who ousted chief executive Antony Jenkins last month amid lacklustre revenue growth and a flat share performance, does not want to see bare toes, T-shirts, jeans or trainers at the bank’s Canary Wharf head office at One Churchill Place in London.
However, the question of open-toed shoes for women is thought to be regarded as a “grey area”.
The new rules are focused on Barclaycard staff who have a looser dress code than others at the bank.
Most of the credit card business’s workforce is in Northampton, but it also occupies several floors in the bank’s London head office.
A memo was sent to Barclaycard staff this week by the division’s interim chief executive Amer Sajed based on comments by McFarlane.
Part of the memo said: “Over the past couple of years, a range of different dress codes have emerged in our One Churchill Place office and, to ensure a consistent experience for clients, customers and colleagues the dress code has now been reviewed and updated.
“So with effect from 1 September, all colleagues have been asked to adopt ‘business casual’ as the dress standard when in the office, other than on Friday which will remain a designated ‘dress down/casual dress’ day.”
On the bank’s dress-down Friday, flip-flops will still not be permitted.
McFarlane, who is standing in amid the search for a new chief executive to replace Jenkins, was otherwise impressed by the Barclaycard staff.
Last month the bank said its pre-tax profits jumped 25 per cent to £3.11 billion in the first six months of the year, despite taking a hit of more than £1bn during the period to compensate customers over scandals such as payment protection insurance (PPI) mis-selling.
At the time McFarlane said: “I want everyone to understand that where we see incongruent conduct behaviour we will stamp it out.”
The group is in the middle of a three-year plan to shed 19,000 staff by the end of 2016, though some fear more jobs could go.