It’s never easy getting through a job interview, is it? You want to make the best impression possible. You spend hours rehearsing for the big event and even longer worrying about whether you’ll get it right when the push comes to shove. What happened to this British woman when she went to an interview just seems like the ultimate insult.
It’s 2017, but you wouldn’t know it from the way Rosie Reilly was treated by the Pharmacy/Chemist chain Boots. Despite being one of the United Kingdom’s biggest employers, their interviewers obviously haven’t noticed that society has transformed since the days when an employee was nothing but a company serf.
Rosie did everything that any of us would. She prepared for her interview, got dressed up and arrived on time full of enthusiasm for the opportunity. But instead of being warmly greeted and professionally interviewed, she was told to pack her bags immediately.
Why? Because she wasn’t dressed “conservatively enough” in the interviewer’s opinion. We do have to wonder what Boots considers to be “conservatively enough” because, from the picture, Rosie looks to be fairly conservatively attired.
There’s no flesh on display at all apart from her hands and her face and it seems unreasonable, except possibly in Saudi Arabia, to expect a woman to cover her face.
Her clothes are all dark colors and they aren’t too tight or too loose, are they? In fact, unless the interviewer has a very peculiar dress code, it would be safe to say that Rosie was “conservatively dressed.”
She tells the tale as follows: “I got to the Boots Opticians in Richmond ready for my interview… I’d spent at least an hour making sure my hair and makeup and outfit was perfect and presentable. After being told to take a seat, and watching the interviewer dash about a bit with other issues going on that day, I was taken to a room where the interview started.”
She continued, “The interviewer asked some general questions about what I’m doing at the moment and what previous jobs I’ve had. After scribbling some notes down, she said: ‘The second half of the interview takes place on the shop floor. However I don’t think that you’re dressed conservatively enough to go on the shop floor, so we’ll arrange to do the second part of the interview another day’. We agreed on Thursday at 11 am, but I won’t be attending.”
Then she says she got on the bus to go home and burst into tears. She felt that the comments had been grossly inappropriate and that they had hurt her feelings.
Her friends rallied around her on social media, with a former customer writing, “You served me a few times in BHS, one of the most helpful and friendliest assistants ever! Their loss,” and another saying, “Absolutely nothing wrong with your appearance. I would most certainly employ you if you came dressed like this.”
Boots’ loss will be another employer’s gain. Points to Rosie for sharing her experience and raising awareness.