Dressed for Success
In the years after World War II, the suit became an emblem of striving, success, conformity, and growing business culture. As more Americans, especially women, moved into office work, they had more money to spend on the abundance of goods available.
A desk, such as this small one from a government office, became a secretary’s domain—and a platform for work and for individual expression. Office workers personalized their space with consumer goods—a change of shoes, purse, and vase.
The Office: Information Revolution
IBM led business computing in the 1960s, leasing machines to institutions in the United States and around the globe. Computers ushered in a new age of speed, efficiency, and information, but they also prompted debates about automation and loss of jobs.
“Think,” declared Thomas Watson Sr., CEO of IBM in the 1920s, and it stuck, becoming the enduring company slogan. Desk signs, notepads, and the title of the company magazine, all reminded IBM employees of the importance of innovation.