Has anyone else been treated differently after your depth of experience and/or age was discovered by a co-worker or friend?
I have a habit of not to divulging my former experience, jobs, and my age to anyone unless if they ask. First, I don’t see why this would concern them and secondly, this gives me a chance to judge them for who they are as a person. See, I look like a 19 year old. What I want to know is, would they use my physical appearance to judge whether to respect me? Look down on me? Assume I have no experience?
I have a belief that you should not judge people on appearances and it is difficult not to as it is the only thing you can go on when you first meet someone. But I think it is also important to be aware of how you treat everyone and assumptions you think might be true – regardless of appearance. Appearance should not be a surrogate for how experienced a person is or who they are as a person. I try very hard to be open and place no assumptions on anyone I first meet and THIS is the type of person I want to associate with. My friends may not be very typical or the mainstream people, but they are people who are beautiful on the inside and non-judgmental.
I have sadly had supervisors and co-workers I strongly believe have used my appearance to assume my incapability until proven despite the fact I was hired for the position:
- There were instances where incapable co-workers more trusted than I was for the job.
- I was highly amused seeing the change in attitude when the co-worker found my LinkedIn and realized I was so much more than he thought I was. This was someone who had never shown an interest in me until then. (see “Now that I am calm and level-headed..” for more information..)