Express Digest

Good looking people ‘are less likely to get low-paid jobs’

Good looking people fare badly when applying for low paid or dull jobs, new research has found. 

While attractive job seekers are generally thought to receive more work offers, being pretty or handsome may be a liability for less desirable jobs, according to a UK study.

The findings have important implications for discrimination in the hiring process, the researchers claim. 

While attractive job seekers are generally thought to receive more work offers, being pretty may be a liability for less desirable jobs such as working in a warehouse (stock image)

WHAT DID THEY DO?

Researchers carried out four experiments involving more than 750 participants, including university students and managers who make hiring decisions in the real world.

Participants were shown profiles of two potential job candidates that included photos, one attractive and one unattractive.

Participants were then asked a series of questions designed to measure their perceptions of the job candidates and, in three of the experiments, whether they would hire these candidates for a less-than-desirable job.

The less desirable jobs included a warehouse worker, housekeeper, customer service representative and the more desirable jobs included things like a manager, project director, IT internship.

In all three experiments where they were asked, participants were significantly less likely to hire the attractive candidate for the less desirable job and more likely to hire the attractive candidate for the more desirable job.

Margaret Lee, who lead the study at the London Business School, said: ‘Our research suggests that attractive people may be discriminated against in selection for relatively less desirable jobs.

‘This stands in contrast to a large body of research that concluded that attractiveness, by and large, helps candidates in the selection process.’

Researchers carried out four experiments involving more than 750 participants, including university students and managers who make hiring decisions in the real world.

Participants were shown profiles of two potential job candidates that included photos, one attractive and one unattractive.

Participants were then asked a series of questions designed to measure their perceptions of the job candidates and, in three of the experiments, whether they would hire these candidates for a less-than-desirable job.

The less desirable jobs included a warehouse worker, housekeeper, customer service representative and the more desirable jobs included things like a manager, project director, IT internship.

In all three experiments where they were asked, participants were significantly less likely to hire the attractive candidate for the less desirable job and more likely to hire the attractive candidate for the more desirable job.

Ms Lee said: ‘We found that participants perceived attractive individuals to feel more entitled to good outcomes than unattractive individuals, and that attractive individuals were predicted to be less satisfied with an undesirable job than an unattractive person.

‘In the selection decision for an undesirable job, decision makers were more likely to choose the unattractive individual over the attractive individual. We found this effect to occur even with hiring managers.’ 

The less desirable jobs included a warehouse worker, housekeeper (pictured, stock image) and customer service representative

Co-author Dr Madan Pillutla said: ‘It is interesting decision makers take into consideration others’ assumed aspirations in their decisions.

‘Because participants thought that attractive individuals would want better outcomes, and therefore participants predicted that attractive individuals would be less satisfied, they reversed their discrimination pattern and favoured unattractive candidates when selecting for a less desirable job.’

The research suggests the established view that attractive candidates are favoured when applying for jobs might be limited to high-level jobs that were the predominant focus of past research.

‘Organisations and policymakers may need to implement different measures from those assumed by past work if they are to curb discrimination in the hiring process’, said Dr Pillutla. 

 

 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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