Sex sells, there’s no doubt about it. But heroin sells pretty well too but that doesn’t mean we should embrace it. Hiring on looks, especially in sales based jobs not only ensures a shorter talent pool but eliminates those that may have a different or better way of doing the job.

There are no statistics on this as beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but let’s assume that 80% of us aren’t what the public would refer to as ‘gorgeous.’ Let’s say that 40% are ‘kind of good looking,’ another 30% are ‘plain’ and the remaining 10% have a face only a mother could love. Within that 10% there’s probably a 1% but I don’t think we need to pick on them, life’s hard enough.

Anyways the maths is straight forward – by hiring simply on looks we remove a majority of our potential team members and using sales as an example of an industry that love doing this based on…nothing other than pointless non scientific bias, that’s a lot of people that may know the product, clients and industry really well.

In fact, many studies have shown that those who aren’t gifted physically have a phycological need to make up for it through crazy things like advanced product knowledge, building meaningful relationships through exceptional service and going the extra mile for their employers.

One pharmaceutical firm in Texas got so tired of hiring stunners that produced no results that their recruitment team was forced to conduct blind interviews in the style of ‘The Voice.’ The candidate would sit in an adjoining room and be interviewed via telephone without the advantages of a physical presence. This made the recruiters look to the tangibles – experience, verbal communication etc.

There’s certainly nothing wrong with hiring beautiful people and I have no bias against them apart from crippling jealousy, however hiring policies that rely on physical attributes, or even lean toward them remove too many people from the talent list. Consider blind interviews or phone based interview (not just phone screens) and only interview in person those with all the right credentials.