Sunday, 29 July 2012

Guest post: Is appearance everything?

Today's guest post is by Ellen from Product Junkie's Junk. Ellen regularly posts about beauty and lifestyle, from makeup tutorials to skincare reviews. 
You can check out her blog here, and also catch her on Twitter here.

I recently attended a seminar with work and there was one particular speaker who really interested me. She did a talk on personnel appearance at work and whilst I first thought she was going to point out the obvious, she went much deeper and really got me thinking. She started talking about your personal brand at work and what your makeup can say about your performance and eligibility in the workplace.

She spoke about a recent study that was completed by Harvard University. The study consisted of 250 people being flashed with 25 different images of women. All of the women in the images were of different races, age ranges, and wore varying levels of makeup. The participants were then asked to rank them in order of hierarchy within the work place, based on their first impressions of the women in the photos. The results were very uniformed and showed that over 70% of the participants ranked the ladies with visible but subtle makeup as the higher earners who were higher up in the company, than those who had no visible make up. The participants stated that their opinion was based around eye makeup and lip colour. They were then shown that many of the women in the images were in fact the same people but with different levels of makeup in each image. 
She also spoke about another study conducted by Harvard University about the length of time it takes someone to form an opinion of you. In fact, eleven judgements are made about you in the first seven seconds of meeting someone. This really amazed me, but it was also a bit scary. In those initial seven seconds characteristics such as credibility, trustworthiness and your level of education are judged, which is particularly daunting when you think about job interviews and such. It really made me think about the impression I’ve given to my current employer, and also those I may meet further along in my career.

Now this isn’t me saying that we need to look flawless everyday of our working lives just in case we bump into the company director, but I would say that appearance is definitely important. Personally, I think that my appearance and my ‘personal brand’ are what will help me move up my chosen career ladder.

So now I do think twice to those extra 20 minutes in bed that I sometimes sacrifice my makeup for …

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