Although women have the same legal rights when applying for a job, gender discrimination and bias are still a reality in many workplaces. With adequate preparation, appropriate attire, and an understanding of their legal rights, however, women do not have to be a victim of sex discrimination in interviewing process.
Basics for Both Genders
Prior to the interview, women review a copy of the job description and anticipate what type of questions the interviewer might ask about their skills, qualification, and work history. Women should also think about why they are interested in the job, what makes them qualified for the position and how the job fits in with their long-term goals.
Before the interview date, women also should prepare a list of professional references and put together a professional portfolio containing relevant work sample. The interviewee should also have copies of her salary history and transcripts available for the interviewer.
Women’s Job Interview Clothing
For an interview, women should wear a two-piece matching pantsuit or skirt suit. Should women choose to wear a skirt to a job interview, it should not be above the knee and should be paired with neutral or dark-colored panty hose. Underneath the suit, you should choose a button-up blouse in a solid color or with a small, subtle print. It’s important to keep make-up minimal and choose subtle colors of nail polish and lipstick.
Either flats or pumps are acceptable footwear, but you should avoid excessively high heels, open-toed styles, sandals or sling-backs. Regardless of the style, women’s shoes should be clean and free from scuffs.
When choosing jewelry, you should also aim for subtlety. Acceptable jewelry may include a watch, stud or small hoop earrings, a wedding or class ring and one necklace. Women should always remove nose or eyebrow rings prior to a job interview.
During the interview, you have to focus on their skills, motivation, credentials and reliability, not their gender. Women should always avoid mentioning marital status or talking about whether they have children, intend to have children or are using birth control. Likewise, women are not required to answer questions related to marital status or gender, or discuss how they plan to handle childcare should they get the job. Pursuant to federal law, employers may not use these gender-related factors to evaluate a women’s suitability for employment.