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Hiring Screening Applicants Stereotyping Job Applicants

I am new to management, and I am going to be hiring a couple of more people over the next few months. One of the other managers advised me to avoid hiring anyone with a tattoo. He claims that tattoos are signs of immaturity, impulsiveness, and questionable judgment. What do you make of his advice?



Your fellow managerís advice about tattoos does not paint a pretty picture. Nor is it an accurate picture. The fact that an employee has a tattoo does not tell you much about his or her personality.

There could be some hypotheses drawn about personalities of people who have tattoos that depict unsavory scenes, themes, or sayings. There could also be hypotheses drawn about people who have tattoos drawn all over their bodies. However, in the situation you described, any tattoo means that the applicant should be knocked out, and that does not make much sense.

Your fellow managerís comments about immaturity, impulsiveness, and judgment of people with tattoos are merely stereotyping. And just for the sake of argument, there some theorists have found that a little immaturity can help in creative thinking, so perhaps people without tattoos should not be hired for creative positions.

You might also mention to your fellow manager that some applicants have tattoos in places that he will never see, while other applicants are advised to cover their tattoos until after they are hired. Regardless, if your colleague wants to learn about a personís qualifications for the position, he should be looking at the work history rather than the tattoos.



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