Hiring based on looks/image

Discussion in 'Fashion... In Depth' started by Deborah, Sep 9, 2010.

  1. Deborah

    Deborah New Member

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    Obviously I am not talking about models here...
    I mean in retail or other areas of the industry, how often do you think this happens? Who do you think is the worst for doing this? We all know about American Apparel supposedly doing it, so who else?
     
  2. TREVOFASHIONISTO

    TREVOFASHIONISTO Well-Known Member

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    Its an obvious American Apparel does
    i mean look how they hire people....its a casting call basically :lol:
    I mean a lot of high end stores might add that in as well because they
    want the people to represent the brand
     
  3. Deborah

    Deborah New Member

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    Do you think its right? Should stores still be allowed to do this?
    I can understand them wanting to present a certain image to represent the brand, but still it seems wrong to do.
     
  4. TREVOFASHIONISTO

    TREVOFASHIONISTO Well-Known Member

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    I dont think its right but as long as they arent
    blatently saying you are ugly we dont want you
    then there is nothing we can do
     
  5. FrenchCactus

    FrenchCactus Vogue Paris Intern

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    Looks matter in the fashion / luxury industry at all levels, whether you work in retail, marketing, finance, P&R, etc. Of course skills are more important than looks in the hiring process, but you do represent the brand as an employee. You don't have to look like a model to work in this industry, but it's important to show that you care about how you look, be well-dressed, have a good haircut, etc. It's a sign of self-respect and respect for others.
     
  6. Feline

    Feline rock-chic

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    Personally, I wouldn't WANT to work for a company that is more interested in employees being a 'company clone' rather than a skilled worker. I think it is totally wrong to employ people purely for their looks regardless of what other attributes they could bring. Their loss.
     
  7. mikeijames

    mikeijames no tom ford, no thanks.

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    no high-end retail business worth its salt would hire someone solely based on their looks. most sales personnel get brought in because of the clients they can attract or the clients they already have that they can bring over. it's similar in the marketing and public relations' side of the business. no one in their right mind would hire someone just because they're cute, but if they can get one hundred of the "right" people to an event at moment's notice, they'll probably be hired. now, in both cases, having the right look does make it easier to make and maintain those connections so the attitudes of the client base gets reflected in those hiring choices. and no business should get penalized for that.....it's not the job of any one business to change the attitudes of the entire world.
     
  8. Drusilla_

    Drusilla_ Member

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    Before American Apparel, the worst offenders in terms of hiring, or discriminating against, their staff based on "image" were Abercrombie & Fitch, to the extent that they seemed to have a lawsuit a year about it.

    But honestly, it seems to happen on every level of the industry- Prada is equally reprehensible, if the story of Rina Bovrisse is anything to go by. Some companies seem to forget that their shop staff are not models, or need qualifications other than those expected of models (though A&F actually calls its in-store staff 'models' and encourages them to flirt with customers etc).
     
  9. FrenchCactus

    FrenchCactus Vogue Paris Intern

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    I interned for L'Oréal Luxury Division in marketing and we were clearly encouraged to take care of how we looked (and it seems logical anyway for a cosmetics company not to have a sloppy staff).
    When I started the internship I wore makeup but it still was a natural look. The team and the makeup artist would try to convince me to try new stuff (sometimes not in a very subtle way) and when I finally gave in to wearing bright red Armani lipstick, it was the talk of the office :rolleyes:
     
  10. Emma Naomi

    Emma Naomi New Member

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    It happens... everywhere. Not just in clothing/etc shops, go to any pub/bar and they're more likely to hire good looking people than otherwise. In jobs where you get 'seen' in the public, employers like to use good looking people. Hey its the same reason why models are pretty - its like the idea of prettiness as if its contagious (if that makes sense), 'you buy into this brand and you will become good looking like the shop attendants' sort of way?
     
  11. Drusilla_

    Drusilla_ Member

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    ^interesting you mention L'Oreal, FrenchCactus, considering that they've been entangled in legal action for discriminating against potential employees on the basis of race, too:
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/wor...825/LOreal-fined-for-race-discrimination.html

    I can get behind a company having a dress code, but demanding that aspects of an employee's appearance that are completely beyond their immediate control (weight, race, class etc) should be a certain way, is utter rubbish. The worst part is that the companies tend to not address these issues directly, or justify it using complete nonsense for an argument (Dov Charney's protestation that he wouldn't hire an employee with saggy pants, in answer to questions about his company's looks-based hiring policy). What utter BS.
     
  12. Urban Stylin

    Urban Stylin ɐʎ ʎǝɥ

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    I believe to a small extent its expected almost the same way they cant hire someone thats not physicaly strong enough to do some jobs or someone that doesnt look a certain way to do a certain job. IMO certain jobs can get away with it liek having someone with good skin working in a beauty store or a good looking and confident person at the reception, it just makes business sense.
     
  13. FrenchCactus

    FrenchCactus Vogue Paris Intern

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    That's interesting, considering the Human Resources kept telling us L'Oréal was all about diversity in its staff :huh: That said, there were a lot of people from Arabic descent with high positions in the company.
     
  14. ultramarine

    ultramarine chaos reigns

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    Isnt American Apparel in trouble for actually hiring good looking people (nut not the most skilled) even up to the management level???

    Thats a dose of real life for you ... you hire based solely on looks, you get borderline de-listed from the stock exchange.

    I do think customers from high-end brands expect the WHOLE package ... people who are likeable, know their stuff and look good. Thats the same thing on the services industry, in this country the number one ice cream parlor company/franchise only hire cute, young girls to work there. Everybody knows that.

    Now, even though image IS important ... Id rather have a b*tt-ugly person tend to me with the nicest demeanor than an Aberzombie model who dares ignore me.
     
  15. Urban Stylin

    Urban Stylin ɐʎ ʎǝɥ

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  16. iluvjeisa

    iluvjeisa clever ain't wise

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    ^I don't see what the big deal is...everyone ugly has to work hard to measure up and those who are attractive with T&A need to dress down to be believable as professionals. You know, banking professionals. I really cannot see how this is news. If you are an accountant or banker you cannot show ample cleavage and strut around like Marilyn Monroe.

    I really don't think there is much that is as annoying as vapid, drop-dead-gorgeous sales clerks....honestly, it's better with a good looking rather than drop-dead gorgeous if all they're doing is helping you with your perfume.
     
  17. LoraV

    LoraV New Member

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    I think every person have to dress up, wear make up and do their hair. You can't come as you want on work. No matter the size you are as long as person is taking care of their looks, i think that is important. If i had a company, i would never hire a stupid person who is gorgous, but dosent know a thing, as i would never hire a smart person who looks like a mess. I love the movie about Coco Chanel and Igor Stravinsky, where Coco looked at her empolyees if they look proper for work (she checked nails, make up..) before they open the shop. I think that is ok, cuz it's your reputation and you can't have sloppy or rude people work for you.
     
  18. iluvjeisa

    iluvjeisa clever ain't wise

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    If you had a company and wanted a model, why would you not hire someone who was gorgeous and stupid. Conversely, if you were looking for someone who was smart, would you send Einstein packing because his hair was unkempt?

    Obviously, the requirement on the appearance is all about the job in question.
     
  19. iluvjeisa

    iluvjeisa clever ain't wise

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    That is just wrong. I mean, perhaps that how you think it should be but it's not true...All that exist at all jobs is a basic sense for hygiene.
     
    #19 iluvjeisa, Sep 11, 2010
    Last edited by moderator julyandluvy: Sep 11, 2010
  20. Lapin de Lune

    Lapin de Lune New Member

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    I imagine that companies with this particular requirement would prefer to hire transients: students perhaps, because if the main priority rests upon physical attractiveness, then age will also factor....so no real hopes of working your way 'up' the career ladder with these guys! :wink:

    When I was a high school student, I had a fling with wanting to become a hairstylist. At the time, I was a habitual nail biter, so never explored my options in this area due to presuming the nail issue would be a non starter (I no longer nibble them). It simply makes sense that some positions would require a certain measure of attractiveness, although I am pretty nonplussed with regards to shop assistants. Most of the stores that I buy clothing from seem to hire a wide range of looks and ages (and genders), so it hasn't appeared in my neck of the woods just yet.
    I don't know, I just loathe homogeneity, so anything that requires folks to all look a certain way kinda repels me.
     

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