You only get one chance to make a first impression. We’ve all heard this a million times, and research definitely supports it. A psychologist at Princeton conducted a study that found our brains need only milliseconds to form opinions of new people. That’s pretty disconcerting if you are nervously walking into a job interview.
There is a large amount of research that implies first impression biases affect hiring. Employers make decisions on applicants while reading their resume, or from non-verbal cues like clothing or the firmness of a handshake.
The more aware you are of the potential biases, the more you will be able to combat them. Viewing resumes without looking at the name, for example can help combat name bias. Think you’re immune to hiring biases? Harvard University has put together a range of tests that uncover the hidden biases inside of us all.
There have been several studies on hiring bias, and the list of things that can influence your hiring decisions is long:
- 100 ms Assumption: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16866745
- Pre-Interview Chat: http://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Fapl0000077
- Firm Grip: http://www.sitesbysarah.com/mbwp/Pubs/2008_Stewart_Dustin_Barrick_Darnold.pdf
- Similarity: http://psycnet.apa.org/record/1965-12050-001
- Tailored Suit: http://www.emeraldinsight.com/doi/abs/10.1108/13612021311305128
- Headscarf: http://econpapers.repec.org/paper/izaizadps/dp10217.htm
- Clothing: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1559-1816.1990.tb01494.x/full
- Watch: http://eprints.lincoln.ac.uk/18243/1/peerj_reviewing_4707_Ellis.pdf
- Shoes: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0092656612000608
- Weight: http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/073088847900600303
- Face: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1559-1816.1991.tb00535.x/full
- Gender: http://www.pnas.org/content/111/12/4403.abstract
- Attractiveness: http://www.cornellhrreview.org/may-the-best-looking-man-win-the-unconscious-role-of-attractiveness-in-employment-decisions/
- Men: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0030507379900035#aep-abstract-id4
- Skin-Color: https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2006-08/uog-stm081106.php
- Makeup: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0025656
- Teeth: https://academic.oup.com/ejo/article/33/2/155/486727/Influence-of-anterior-tooth-alignment-on-peer
- Male: http://psycnet.apa.org/record/2016-41321-001
- 50 ms Detection: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022103107001783?via%3Dihub
- Similar Orientation:http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/wol1/doi/10.1111/j.1559-1816.2010.00669.x/full
- Parent: http://gender.stanford.edu/sites/default/files/motherhoodpenalty.pdf
- Common Name:http://www.emeraldinsight.com/doi/abs/10.1108/02683940810849648
- African-American Name: https://medicalxpress.com/news/2015-10-racial-bias.html
- Non-Anglo Bias: http://www.hireimmigrants.ca/wp-content/uploads/Final-Report-Which-employers-discriminate-Banerjee-Reitz-Oreopoulos-January-25-2017.pdf
- White Name: http://www.nber.org/digest/sep03/w9873.html
Article by Jennifer Gladstone, EBI
Jennifer Gladstone is a news anchor and journalist with more than 20 years of experience in front of the camera. She's worked in several markets, large and small, and has performed nearly every task needed in a newsroom. As EBI’s Screening News Editor, she keeps EBI’s customers and blog subscribers up to date on the latest screening news and legislative alerts affecting companies of all sizes.