employee morale

Mike Jeffries, Abercrombie CEO, Now Bans The Color Black

Mike Jeffries, Abercrombie CEO, has now banned the color black from being sold in stores and from being worn by employees.

Business Insider reported that the retailer confirmed that it doesn’t sell black clothing and that management also discourages corporate employees at its Columbus, Ohio headquarters from wearing the popular color at work.

One employee, who wished to remain anonymous, said that “Management will tell people that Mike hates the color, and so we’re not supposed to wear it to work. It even applies to coats in the winter.”

Abercrombie provided Business Insider a statement on why it doesn’t care for the color black:

 “Abercrombie & Fitch does not sell black clothing and discourages wearing it at our home office and in our stores, because we are a casual lifestyle brand and feel black clothing is formal. We have nothing against black clothing and feel it is perfectly appropriate for things like tuxedos.”

This isn’t the first time Mike Jeffries has gotten himself, and the company for that matter, into trouble with media.

Both Jeffries and Abercrombie got plenty of negative feedback after Business Insider re-printed quotes from CEO Mike Jeffries given in a 2006 Salon interview.

Jeffries had said that the store and its products were aimed at skinny, attractive “cool kids,” instead of the “not-so-cool kids,” and that their business model is “absolutely” exclusionary.

“In every school there are the cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids. Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong [in our clothes], and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely.”

Granted, banning the color black from being sold in stores and from being worn by their employees isn’t nearly as bad as targeting only “cool kids,” but it could stir up other controversies.

With Mike Jeffries, Abercrombie CEO, now banning  the color black from being sold in stores and from being worn by employees simply because he can’t stand the color, there is bound to be some kind of backlash.

[Image via Shutterstock/takasu]

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