Nope. Sorry, too attractive

In Around the World on December 5, 2010 at 9:23 pm


I read this interesting article from the NY times about beautiful women being discriminated against during the hiring process (a study conducted at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel) which I thought ties in somewhat to my previous blog about beauty.  The world over is obsessed with it, yet it doesn’t always play into our favor when viewed as a competing factor.  How do you get what you want? Eliminate the competition. 

This study showed that when men and women sent in their resumes with a photo attached, it affected whether or not they were hired.  Attractive men were more likely to get called in for an interview over plain men, while women who didn’t put a picture on their resume, or who were plain-looking were more likely to get called in for an interview.  When researchers went to the firms they discovered that those doing the hiring were women between the ages of 23-34 and single, so I guess jealously played a factor in it.  For the men, putting a picture showed confidence while for attractive women it showed vanity (or trying to get a job based on appearance).

I used to think that people who were attractive usually got what they wanted, for both men and women, regardless of which gender they’re dealing with – like that general understanding that people only want to be friends with attractive people…or maybe people are friends with people of similar attractiveness, since they feel more comfortable that way…hmmm. 

Anyways, for resumes it really shouldn’t matter what someone looks like, I mean being attractive isn’t necessarily going to cause problems unless it leads to sexual harassment or something, but that’s not exactly the fault of the attractive female. As long as they benefit the company it shouldn’t matter what an employee looks like…too bad personal insecurities get in the way.

In the US we don’t put pictures with our resumes (usually) but in Europe, Israel, and I’m sure other parts of the world it matters.  I’m not sure why because it leads to discrimination, and of course there always will be bias whether it’s conscious or not, but putting a picture makes it so much easier.  Though for this study they did try to pick a sample of people who had ambiguous ethnic origins (and the resumes were basically identical)

So what does this say about females?  Do we put greater emphasis on looks than men? Judging ourselves and other more harshly than men judge us?  It’s widely known that women are harsh critics but for some situations this is a positive characteristic.  The underlying issue here however, is that those single women doing the hiring don’t want to compete against a more attractive female for male attention (and thus the possibility of finding a bf and potentially a husband among their male coworkers). *sigh* Seems a little petty.


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