Tag Archives: Jill

If–and Only If–He or She Feels Most Comfortable, Authentic, and “In Control” in a Suit

Day 15 - Self-Contemplation by Flickr user Dyvo

 

This anonymous interview is with an Academic librarian who has been a member of a hiring or search committee. This librarian works at a library with 50-100 staff members in a City/town in the Southeastern US.

What Candidates Should Wear

Should the candidate wear a suit to the interview?

Other: I truly feel that the candidate should wear a suit if–and only if–he or she feels most comfortable, authentic, and “in control” in a suit. It isn’t necessarily about my institution (we have suite wearers and non-suit wearers at all levels of librarian, from the ref desk to the dean’s office), but more about personal preference/comfort level for me.

An outfit with a coordinated blazer and trousers:

Other: Still on the same level of professionalism as a suite, but slightly more relaxed.

Bare arms are inappropriate in an interview, even in the summer.

False

If a woman wears a skirt to an interview, should she also wear pantyhose?

Other: This question makes me think we are seriously crazy. Bare legs are fine. Pantyhose is fine. Tights are fine.

Women should wear make-up to an interview:

I don’t care what’s on the face, it’s what’s in the brain that counts

Is there anything a candidate might wear that would cause them to be instantly out of the running? If you have any funny stories about horrifying interview outfits, we’d love to hear them.

Just try to be clean and neat.

Do you expect different levels of formality of dress, depending on the position you’re hiring for?

No

Which jewelry may candidates wear: (Please select all that are acceptable)

Single, simple necklace, bracelet, and/or ring
A few simple necklaces, bracelets, and/or rings
Arty or more elaborate necklaces, bracelets, or rings
Nose Ring (nostril)
Eyebrow Ring, Monroe piercing, septum piercing, or other face piercing
Earrings
Multiple Ear Piercings
Large gauge ear jewelry (stretched ears)

Which hair colors are acceptable for candidates:

All of them, even pink

The way a candidate dresses should:

Show personality

How does what a candidate wears affect your hiring decision?

It doesn’t, and it shouldn’t. I more concerned about (a) can he/she do the job? and (b) will he/she “fit” the organization/team, complementing and enhancing it? Perhaps I’m too laid back.

What This Library Wears

How do you dress when you are going to conduct an interview?

Dress slacks, dressy blouse. Maybe a cardigan and/or more casual (i.e. not matching) blazer.

On a scale of one (too dressed up for my workplace) to five (too casual), khakis and a polo shirt are:

3

What’s the dress code at your library/organization?

Other: We don’t have a true, set-in-stone dress code, but the majority of the organization tends to be a bit business casual. That said, I do wear jeans (dark, no holes) to work from time to time. I don’t tend to wear t-shirts (unless it’s a university/mascot t-shirt, maybe during big games).

Are there any specific items of clothing, etc. that are forbidden by your dress code?

N/A: We wear what we want!

Librarians at your organization wear: (Please check all that apply)

Other: We have name tags, but are not required to wear them.

This survey was co-authored by Jill of Librarian Hire Fashion – submit your interview outfit to her blog!

Photo:

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Filed under 50-100 staff members, Academic, City/town, Southern US, What Should Candidates Wear?

Dirty Nails

Day 186 by Flickr user Girl With Butterfly Wings

 

 

This anonymous interview is with an Academic librarian who has been a member of a hiring or search committee. This librarian works at a library with 10-50 staff members in a Rural area in Australia/New Zealand.

What Candidates Should Wear

Should the candidate wear a suit to the interview?

√ Probably not (but it’s ok if the candidate does wear one)

An outfit with a coordinated blazer and trousers:

√ Is totally different

Bare arms are inappropriate in an interview, even in the summer.

√ True

If a woman wears a skirt to an interview, should she also wear pantyhose?

√ No, but it’s not a dealbreaker

Women should wear make-up to an interview:

√ I don’t care, as long as it’s not over-the-top

Is there anything a candidate might wear that would cause them to be instantly out of the running? If you have any funny stories about horrifying interview outfits, we’d love to hear them.

Dirty or untidy messy hair, especially if it is long. dirty nails. Strong body odour.

Do you expect different levels of formality of dress, depending on the position you’re hiring for?

√ Yes, the higher the position, the more formal I expect the candidate to dress

Which jewelry may candidates wear: (Please select all that are acceptable)

√ A few simple necklaces, bracelets, and/or rings

Which hair colors are acceptable for candidates:

√ All of them, even pink

The way a candidate dresses should:

√ Show personality

How does what a candidate wears affect your hiring decision?

Not enormously. But if the candidate was poorly dressed, with poor grooming, they probably wouldn’t be considered, even if they had the goods.

What This Library Wears

How do you dress when you are going to conduct an interview?

Sensibly. Skirt and blouse usually.

On a scale of one (too dressed up for my workplace) to five (too casual), khakis and a polo shirt are:

3

What’s the dress code at your library/organization?

√ Business casual

Are there any specific items of clothing, etc. that are forbidden by your dress code? (Please check all that apply)

√ N/A: We wear what we want!

Librarians at your organization wear: (Please check all that apply)

√ Name tags
√ Shirt, waistcoat/vest, or other single piece of clothing issued by the library

This survey was co-authored by Jill of Librarian Hire Fashion – submit your interview outfit to her blog!

Photo: Day 186 by Flickr user Girl With Butterfly Wings via Creative Commons License

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Filed under 10-50 staff members, Academic, Australia/New Zealand, Rural area, What Should Candidates Wear?

Stats and Graphs: What Should Candidates Wear?

Hey, a new survey!

Jill from Librarian Hire Fashion and I have put together a new survey seeking the opinions of hiring managers on what candidates should wear.

We started putting the word out on Tuesday, September 4th, and so many people have responded!  As of Sunday, September 9th, 154 people had taken the survey!  That’s more than the 146 responses I’ve gotten for the original survey, which has been up for about six months.  So far an overwhelming majority of them have been Academic, probably because the request for participation on the collib-l listserv went up on Tuesday, and the publib post didn’t go up until Friday.

So, if you know people who hire for archives, school libraries, special libraries, and public libraries, please invite them to take the survey!  (Please do share with people who hire Academic librarians too of course, we’re just more in need of those other groups.)

Thank you in advance for spreading the word, and thank you, thank you, thank you, to the people who have already responded.

First, a Word about the Survey

This survey is much heavier on the closed-ended questions.  Hopefully, this Stats and Graphs post will introduce you to the survey, and as I post individual responses later on the context of their answers will be clearer.  You can of course click in and look through this survey, or the original, without having to respond, at the links on the Participate page.

You may notice, as one respondent did, we’re big Ask a Manager fans.  One of the questions is inspired by The Great Pantyhose Debate of 2010 and caused one respondent to ask:

is this a serious question?

It is.  Deadly serious.

I hope that the answers will help as you stand in front of your closet trying to decide on the outfit you will wear to the occasion that may just TOTALLY CHANGE YOUR LIFE!  However, I’d like to reiterate that this project isn’t precisely scientific, and you should feel free to disregard any of the results you disagree with.  As one respondent pointed out:

You should have someone vet this survey. The response are poorly articulated and are biased by the overly casual and poor attempts at humor. Survey response should not be jokey. I feel like you were wearing flip flops when you wrote it.

Incidentally, we did actually have friends and library contacts vet the survey, but didn’t always take their advice.  My sister, who blogs about gender and workplace bias in her blog Bay Area Actor, pointed out that the questions are more focused on women, but this was not corrected.  Partly because there are more women librarians, and partly because the survey was pretty long already without adding in questions about neckties.

I’m sorry, manbrarians.  A lot of the survey is still relevant to you, just not all of it.

RESULTS!

Anyway, enough rambling.  On to the stats and graphs!

Just to reiterate that the majority of respondents are academic librarians, who may or may not have more formal standards of dress, I’m going to share the demographics of respondents first.

Also to mention, I’m using Google forms, and the charts it generates cut off some of the answer choices.  However, it takes a while to do a post like this, and even longer to make it prettier in Excel, so I’ll ask you to please just excuse how sloppy it looks.  This is a labor of love, and I’m a busy lady.

Demographics

What type of institution do you hire for?

Academic Library 105 68%
Public Library 42 27%
School Library 0 0%
Special Library 3 2%
Archives 0 0%
Other 4 3%

Where are you?

Northeastern US 41 27%
Midwestern US 35 23%
Southern US 42 27%
Western US 21 14%
Canada 5 3%
UK 5 3%
Australia/New Zealand 1 1%
Other 4 3%

Where are you?

Urban area 42 27%
Suburban area 38 25%
City/town 53 34%
Rural area 19 12%
Other 2 1%

How many staff members are at your library?

0-10 35 23%
10-50 80 52%
50-100 17 11%
100-200 11 7%
200+ 10 6%

Are you a librarian?

Yes 145 94%
No 4 3%
It’s complicated 5 3%

Are you now or have you ever been:

a hiring manager(hiring people that you will directly or indirectly supervise)  105 69%
a member of a hiring or search committee  131 86%
human resources  6 4%
Other  5 3%
(People may select more than one checkbox,
so percentages may add up to more than 100%.)

What Candidates Should Wear

Should the candidate wear a suit to the interview?

Yes, absolutely! It shows respect and professionalism   23    15%
Probably, yes (but it’s ok if the candidate wears somethinga little less formal) 88    57%
Probably not (but it’s ok if the candidate does wear one) 23    15%
No way! It shows a lack of understanding about my libraryand/or the nature of librarianship 1    1%
I don’t care 8   5%
Other 11    7%

An outfit with a coordinated blazer and trousers:

Counts as a suit 113 73%
Is totally different 16 10%
I do not know and/or care 19 12%
Other 6 4%

Bare arms are inappropriate in an interview, even in the summer.

True 58 38%
False 47 31%
I don’t care 27 18%
Other 22 14%

If a woman wears a skirt to an interview, should she also wear pantyhose?

Never, pantyhose is for my grandmother 7 5%
No, but it’s not a dealbreaker 55 36%
Either pantyhose or tights. Bare legs are inappropriate 30 19%
Yes, true professionals always wear pantyhose 5 3%
Other 57 37%

Women should wear make-up to an interview:

Always 7 5%
I don’t care, as long as it’s not over-the-top 63 41%
I don’t care what’s on the face, it’s what’sin the brain that counts 69 45%
Never 0 0%
Other 15 10%

Do you expect different levels of formality of dress, depending on the position you’re hiring for?

Yes, the higher the position, the moreformal I expect the candidate to dress   118 77%
No   24 16%
I don’t care   7 5%
Other   5 3%

Which jewelry may candidates wear:

Single, simple necklace, bracelet, and/or ring   113 74%
A few simple necklaces, bracelets, and/or rings   118 78%
All of the simple necklaces, bracelets, and rings heor she can load on   27 18%
Arty or more elaborate necklaces, bracelets, or rings   88 58%
Nose Ring (nostril)   55 36%
Eyebrow Ring, Monroe piercing, septum piercing,or other face piercing   42 28%
Earrings   119 78%
Multiple Ear Piercings   90 59%
Large gauge ear jewelry (stretched ears)   34 22%
Other   51 34%
(People may select more than one checkbox,
so percentages may add up to more than 100%.)

Which hair colors are acceptable for candidates:

All of them, even pink 87 56%
Natural colors (black, brown, red, blonde, gray) 48 31%
Other 19 12%

The way a candidate dresses should:

Show personality 32 21%
Be fairly neutral 63 41%
I don’t really care how a candidate dresses 18 12%
Other 41 27%

What the Library Wears

On a scale of  1 to 5, where one is too dressed up for your workplace, khakis and a polo shirt are:

1 –
Too dressed up for my workplace
1 1%
2 2 1%
3 116 75%
4 20 13%
5 –
Too casual for my workplace
8 5%

What’s the dress code at your library/organization?

Business formal 4 3%
Business casual 88 57%
Casual 31 20%
I don’t even know what any of that means 2 1%
Other 29 19%

Are there any specific items of clothing, etc. that are forbidden by your dress code?

Jeans 38 27%
Flip flops 58 41%
Visible Tattoos 16 11%
Short skirts/shorts 52 37%
Tank tops 53 37%
Logos/band insignia/slogans 46 32%
Sneakers/trainers 21 15%
N/A: We wear what we want! 38 27%
Other 87 61%
(People may select more than one checkbox, so percentages may add up to more than 100%.)

Librarians at your organization wear:

Name tags 66 64%
Badges 22 21%
Uniforms 1 1%
Shirt, waistcoat/vest, or other single pieceof clothing issued by the library 3 3%
Other 40 39%
(People may select more than one checkbox,
so percentages may add up to more than 100%.)

When I start posting individual responses, you’ll see how the respondent answered each of these questions, as well as the following open-ended questions:

  • Is there anything a candidate might wear that would cause them to be instantly out of the running? If you have any funny stories about horrifying interview outfits, we’d love to hear them.
  • Can you share any stories about how a candidate nailed the proper interview outfit, especially if your organization does not expect suits?
  • How does what a candidate wears affect your hiring decision?
  • How do you dress when you are going to conduct an interview?
  • Do you have any comments, or are there any other questions you think we should add to this survey?

If you have questions, comments or concerns, we’d love to hear them. You can either comment below, or email hiringlibrariansATgmail.

Thank you again, to all the respondents, and thank YOU for reading!

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Filed under Academic, Australia/New Zealand, Canada, City/town, Midwestern US, News and Administration, Northeastern US, Public, Rural area, Southern US, Special, Stats and Graphs, Suburban area, UK, Urban area, Western US, What Should Candidates Wear?