It’s a fact of life that we accept information easier from members of our own demographic or peer group. Women can speak to women in a way that is non-judgmental or threatening, which makes it more genuine.
That being said, this post is for my demographic (but everyone please keep reading). The African American community, some of you didn’t get the memo, so here it is…Things you shouldn’t do when applying for work. First, if you are filling out an application or dropping off a resume in person, PLEASE dress nicely. It doesn’t matter what the job is, try to be business casual.
Why? Because you never know who will be accepting your application or resume, and if you look nicely, they may try to get you in front of the hiring person immediately. True story; I was in an office building waiting to be interviewed, and young lady came in to drop off a resume. She had on jean shorts and flip flops. She pulled up in a car that had loud music playing. She went over to the receptionist, said she wanted to drop off a resume. At that moment another woman was approaching the receptionist area. She accepted the resume, the young lady turned and walked away. The other woman, ask the receptionist, what did she want. She replied, she was dropping off a resume, the other woman, took it, looked at the lady getting into that car, dropped the resume in the trash, said “Oh no.” Then she introduced herself to me as the HR hiring manager. Was that right or wrong, who knows, and who cares? It happens, if you don’t know; now you know!
There’s more, let’s say you get the interview, here’s where it really gets personal, and I am not telling you this as a matter of personal preference. I have seen or heard that SOME hiring personnel/ interviewers will consider the following things when making hiring decisions. Most of them occur before you ever open your mouth. It can happen when you pull into the parking lot.
FIRST, BE ON TIME! (No C.P. time). It may be cool for a party or a date but not a job interview. Next, your car, If it’s too flashy (RIMS, TINT), depending on the job, they may assume you don’t need the job. Adding accessories to your car not only boosts the appearance of the car, you could be boosting the appearance of wealth. Some decision makers may be turned off by it. On the flip side, if you drive a hooptie (that is a broken down, rusted out, smoking beater) park it in the back, WAY BACK.
The same rules apply to your personal appearance, be conservative. Don’t dress too flashy; men stay away from bright colored, shiny suits/clothing. Women, you can play with color more than men, but still not too flashy, shiny, sexy or provocative. That means, lower the heel a bit, and tone down the make-up, cleavage, skin, perfume, body lotions and finger nails. Men, take out the earrings, tone down the cologne. If you have tattoos try to cover them up. A minimum amount of jewelry should be present if any at all, that means a wedding ring, a class ring, a watch, a bracelet or a small necklace. Don’t look like Mr. T.
Finally, and I can’t believe I have to mention this one, but please turn your technology off; the iPhone, android, cell phone, two-way, beeper , Bluetooth or whatever you have, turn it off! There is nothing ruder and will get you disqualified quicker than talking, or texting during the interview process. (And yes, people are doing this, for real!) Keep in mind these are all suggestions provided to increase your chances. The point being, you only get one chance to make a first impression. Make it the very best one you can make. That’s the truth!