Friday, May 22, 2009

On The Job Market Being Super Morbidly Obese

I wanted to write about two different experiences I had interviewing for jobs when I was super morbidly obese.

The Job I Didn't Get:

I was very burned out by a previous employer, and I decided to interview at a private school where the boys I watch attend. It was for a fourth grade position, and my resume was stacked with positive things. I had good references, including a glowing reference from my former graduate professor that was two single-spaced pages. The interview went very well. There were two positions open for fourth grade. I don't know how many candidates they interviewed, but I did not get either position. Later on that year, I started looking at their school website, particularly at staff pictures. I noticed that very few of their staff were overweight. I specifically looked at the two teachers they hired for fourth grade, both of these teachers were thin. I am not trying to puff myself up, but I truly feel I was not offered this job because of my weight. (I was probably 330 pounds at the time.)

The Job I Did Get:

When I left the classroom for a year and a half as a literacy specialist, I was around 365-370 pounds. I know that they interviewed many people for this position. I also know they did a lot of resume weeding out before interviewing. My interview had specific questions, in which I had three minutes to answer each one. There were two obese people on the interview committee. I certainly had all the credientials for this position. I got called back for a second interview with the head boss, and was offered the job.

I am a 20/20, 48 Hours, Dateline News junkie. I watched a special years ago where they set up interviews for groups of people who had the same credientials, dressed professionally, interviewed well, with one distinction: several of the people were normal weight, and several were heavy. It was sad how often (very overwhelming majority) the job went to the thinner person. When they would go back and interview and ask, "What made the person stand out?" that you hired? They would say all kinds of things like credientials, etc, but it was all a bust because these people truly were evenly matched. In the end, they opted with what looked more pleasing to the eye.

1 comment:

Tiff said...

How true.... Sad but true.

I've experienced similar situations... I haven't thought about them in a while... but your post made me think....

The sad fact is that this is true, in many other areas too... aside from employment.