lifestyle

The lie one third of all married women tell in a job interview.

As if job interviews weren’t stressful enough…

A large part of preparing for a job interview involves choosing what to wear.

After deciding the persona we want to present to the strangers interviewing us, it becomes a case of searching through the wardrobe (or hitting the shops) for the perfect interview outfit.

But for me, when I went for a job last year, part of my guise meant going without my wedding ring.

It wasn’t because it was too hard to get on my finger because it had significantly puffed up since my wedding (though it had).

And I didn’t forget to put it on. Quite the opposite, in fact.

Enjoy your ring, Carrie. Just don’t wear it to a job interview.

After thinking on it for quite a while, I chose not to wear my ring so there was one less piece of information the interviewers had on which to judge me.

I felt that being female and in my late 20s might be enough to raise negative thoughts of maternity leave, carers leave and job-sharing in the minds of the interviewing panel, let alone the sight of a big, sparkly diamond.

This type of prejudice had been on my mind ever since a recruiter told a friend of mine to just stay in the job she was trying to leave because, with her age, gender and marital status, no other law firms would hire her.

And I was afraid that having my marital status on show during the interview would detract from my just as sparkly this-weakness-is-really-a-positive rant.

All the single ladies don’t need to worry about hiding their ring.

Of course, I technically shouldn’t need to have taken this rather drastic step as it’s illegal to discriminate against someone on the basis of their marital status (as well as their age, carer responsibilities, pregnancy, gender, sexual preference, race and other attributes).

I was worried I was being paranoid and spoke to some friends about it. It turns out, I wasn’t the only one who had hidden their bling.

A 2013 study also found that one in three women removed their ring for a job interview so as to not harm their prospects of success.

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Juliet Bourke – a partner at global corporate firm Deloitte and leader of the firm’s Australian Diversity, Inclusion and Leadership team – said she not aware of this practice.

“At the end of the day, I think authenticity is critical,” Ms Bourke said.

A 2013 study found that one in three women removed their ring for a job interview so as to not harm their prospects of success.

“If you think a potential employer will judge you on the basis of irrelevant characteristics, surely it would make you question whether that employer is the one for you.”

But how do you know what a potential employer will judge you on? And what if you don’t have the luxury of casting aside employers who can’t be bothered with the hassle of helping working mothers find a job that works for them (if you can even pick who those employers are)?

And is there anything ethically wrong with presenting yourself to potential employers minus the only visible sign of your having ‘settled down’?

Apparently, this is what we should be wearing to interviews (post continues after video):

I think the only thing wrong with it is that women feel they need to pretend to be single.

In my mind, removing your ring is not lying about your martial status, it’s just not actively offering an irrelevant fact to strangers.

And it’s a piece of information that employers are not legally allowed to take into account.

It’s an imperfect solution to a problem that – unless every unsuccessful candidate is routinely given full and frank reasons for why they did not get the job – will continue to exist.

I didn’t get the job I interviewed for last year.

But not wearing my wedding ring to the interview gave me some assurance that my rejection was at least for the right reasons.

For more interview tips, try these articles:

Former Vogue Editor: The 9 mistakes most people make in a job interview.

The one colour you shouldn’t wear to a job interview. (And the colour you should.)

The question that can stop a job interview dead.

Would you remove your ring for an interview?