Hide Your Bling?

I came across a link on my friend’s FB page (hey Ann) and wanted to get some thoughts on it.

From the article:

When it comes to the interviewing and negotiating in the work place, are women judged for and by the rings on their fingers? And if so, why exactly?

Wearing a flashy engagement ring to an interview “has got to be a personal decision,” said Karen Katz, a principal with Forum, one of the largest executive search firms in New York City. “But it could be a damaging one.”

Katz, who coaches candidates before interviews, said that anything that distracts from what the applicant is saying is a negative in an interview. That includes bangle bracelets that make noise when you move your hands, eye-catching costume jewelry, strong perfumes, and, potentially, a very large engagement ring.

When I go to interview, I follow the standard interview tips that I’ve gotten over the years: wear black/blue/gray suit, keep your hair neat, and wear minimal jewelry and makeup. But I have to admit when I interviewed last year for my current job, I wore my engagement ring. In fact, I sometimes mentioned my upcoming wedding in the pre-interview small talk, partially to let potential employers know I was probably going to need a bit of time off. I know that it is still pretty much an employers market and any detail can be used to knock a candidate out of the running for an opportunity, but folks can be judgmental about what seems to be the most trivial of things. If I was an interviewer, I’m more concerned about a person’s qualifications!

But these days, with competition so tight, I suppose you have to do what you have to do.

When it comes time for a big interview, or the meeting where you plan to ask for a raise, should you leave the ring at home? Or is the whole idea rather ridiculous?

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12 thoughts on “Hide Your Bling?

  1. Just sounds dumb. I don’t know of any employer checking out a ring finger for the bling. If they did, half the old broads I work with wouldn’t have jobs.

  2. I used to interview in my last HR role. The only time I recall looking at anyone’s ring finger was during the time I was obsessed with getting married–and it didn’t factor into recommending qualified candidates.

  3. Honey, if I had a ring that was so big that it needed to be hidden I WOULD BE A STAY AT HOME WIFE.

  4. I could see this playing a role. Its been documented that married women in the workplace often don’t get paid as much as single women or men (whether married or single). I’m sure a lot of supervisiors make the assumption that once a woman gets married, she’ll have kids & be out for that, and then unable to work longer/more hours because she’s gotta be running around with the kids. On the flip side, often single childless women are assumed to never have a life & thus are constantly volunteered to work late, go on trips, etc. Assumptions abound in the workplace because of a woman’s marital status…tho men don’t get these same assumptions…hmmm

  5. I think the key word here is “very large”. Of course, that’s completely open to interpretation but I could imagine being distracted if I were interviewing someone and they had a humongous engagement ring. They also listed eye catching costume jewelry, three or four carats of a sparkly diamond is nothing if not eye catching.

    All that said, It wouldn’t affect my decision about anything and I wouldn’t leave my engagement ring at home unless I wanted to. If someone really wouldn’t hire me because of it, doesn’t sound like a great place to work anyway.

  6. When I was in corporate and did a lot of interviewing, I don’t ever remember paying attention to someone’s ring finger. I think it’s quite ridiculous!

  7. I think it’s crazy, but I wouldn’t be surprised if an employer held that against you. When I was working, my CEO (a woman) would give me the once over and say, “Nice outfit. Now how much are we paying you?!” I think she kept my wardrobe choices in the back of her mind when raise and review time came about.

  8. I’ve never paid any attention to the wedding jewelry of anyone I’ve interviewed. She did say very large, though. I suppose if it was gimormous I’d notice it, which I guess is her point – you don’t want them to potentially be distracted by anything. I was once put off by something someone wore, but she got the job because she was the best qualified. If someone just as qualified had applied and worn something less distracting, she may not have.

  9. I find the idea ridiculous – I remember reading this somewhere and called b.s. Sometimes I think issues are created where there are none just so an author can turn in an article.

  10. I haven’t interviewed in forever. However, unless its completely ostentatious, I don’t see the issue. I also think being upfront is the right thing to do. I would be pretty bummed if an employer left out key information.

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