Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Sexy Librarian

I initially saw this post on the Brazen Careerist (who I think is a cleavage career guider and I both nod at or loathe her opinions, so this is not a recommendation to follow her blog) about how people--as young as traditional college grads--are thinking about or financing plastic surgery to give themselves a career boost. Or a start, if looks really matter that much. Apparently, there is some science behind this, or a really catchy press release for the book Looks: Why they matter more than you imagined.

Of course, this has implications for people looking for work: if your teeth are yellowish or your boobs need some support or you are asymmetrical--somewhere--can it affect your employment prospects or earnings over time? According to some of the sections of the book, yep, appearance matters (available on the publisher's website; I would also recommend the podcast since it focuses on looks in the workplace from hiring to evaluation). Since I have not read the book--on my shelf right now--I have some additional questions that I hope the book covers:
  • What if you are too dark for the culture's beauty standards?
  • Eyes aren't round or big enough?
  • How aware are some people of the interplay of beauty and what they think is attractive?
  • And of course, the eternal question: boobs or butt?
While researching this post, I came across I really depressing article from Dateline NBC where they tested a variety of scenarios--lost, dropped papers, cut in line--with models of both genders and average looking people of both genders, and, well, you guessed it, cuteness got better service. The author of the Looks book was quoted at several points about their tests and his own research.

Sorry for the delay in posting: two conferences and two presentations in two weeks was just too much. Back to our regularly scheduled programming.

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