Assignment 3: Beautyism in the Workplace
Professor Jamie Davis Smith, Esq.
HRM 599 – Human Resource Management Capstone
May 13, 2012
Define “beautyism” and its potential discriminatory effects on hiring in the workplace.
“Beautyism” is giving a person preference or hiring someone due to their outward beauty. Some research has suggested that people who are outwardly beautiful get hired faster, get paid more, and receive better treatment in life in general, becoming more successful than others. While this may be true to an extent, I do believe that the opposite is also true, attractive people are over-looked due to their outward appearance and are taken less seriously even when qualified or more qualified than another candidate. This is not to mention that life brings challenges, hurts, and un-pleasantries, regardless of how a person looks. So we cannot be too quick to say that beautiful people have better lives. In this case though, the issue is beautyism as a “free-pass” in a sense, or a way into a job position without the proper qualifications (or in spite of the proper qualifications). There has been some evidence that people who hire for job openings do give preference at times to people who are obviously physically attractive. Researchers have noted that “beautiful people” tend to charm interviewers with their looks and create a positive tone and impression based solely off of how they look.
Assess the Chair’s behavior from a human resource management perspective. I feel that if people try to regulate every detail of a hiring process, including the way people look, there will be even more discrimination. When an exceptionally beautiful or attractive candidate is interviewed, managers may feel pressure not to hire them just so there are no lies or tension in the workplace as to why that person was hired. In this case, though, it is not even evident that the Chair made an incorrect decision. Other department members...
References: Retrieved from: http://jobs.aol.com/articles/2010/05/18/pretty-girls-get-all-the-jobs/. 16 May 2012.
ERG Theory. Dictionary of human resource management (2001): 112. EBSCO MegaFILE. Retrieved viaWeb. 5 May 2011.
Muller, M. (2009): The managers guide to HR: hiring, firing, & performance evaluations. New York, NY: AMACOM
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