Saturday, May 19, 2012

Weekend Wardrobe Watch

I hope everyone is taking advantage of this gorgeous day!  This weekend's WWW focuses on the massive sale that Bloomingdale's has going on.  Now is a great time to find items that transition well to fall on sale, because most stores are clearing out to make room for the fall fashions that are just around the corner.  (Can you BELIEVE we are already only 3 months away from Vogue September issue?!)

My top choice are these blue cropped Calvin Klein pants.  These are great for summer with some wedges and a white shirt (I LOVE the zipper on the legs!), and will transition right into fall with knee high boots and that lime green sweater that we all thought was such a good idea at the time.  Break it out!  Also be sure to check the sale prices on shoes.  At $55, this deal is unbeatable!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Marital Status and the Workplace

Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen!  This week's topic is something I know my friends struggled with during the job hunt and during their employment:  marital status.  I will be discussing this from both the male and female POV.  After talking to several of my dude friends, I learned how marital status can shape how others view them at work.  I recognize that most employers are way too progressive to pull stunts like this, so the focus is on those few that cling to stereotypes.  Essentially, it comes down to this:  while some professional employers who adhere to stereotypical gender views prefer women who are single, they prefer men who are married or close to it.

First, the ladies.  During law school, most of my friends spent a good amount of time interviewing for summer associate positions in an effort to secure employment before graduation.  One night during a monthly girl's night, we started talking about our experiences in those interviews.  My friend brought up an intriguing question of strategy:  whether or not she should wear her wedding rings to interviews.  It never occurred to me before that moment, but it was then I realized it mattered.  OK, so we all know employers are not allowed to ask us if we are married, single, etc.  But if you wear a ring, they don't need to ask.  Sexist as it may be, the reality is that there are employers out there that will look at a woman with a wedding ring as a negative factor.  This goes back to traditional notions of family.  As progressive as we think we are, employers very well could look at that ring on a lady's finger, especially women in their mid and late twenty's, and assume that you want to have children and eventually leave your job because of it.  Now, you know as well as I do that women are more than capable of doing it all.  We can raise kids AND work!  Imagine that!  Doing more than one thing at once!

But all jokes aside, this can be reality.  One of my friends was threatened with termination if she got knocked up.  I noticed several county legal employers (who will remain nameless) looking at my left hand in interviews.  It is unfortunate that a symbol of your love and commitment to your partner may mean much more to a potential employer. 

But ladies, we are not alone in this.  I mentioned this problem while enjoying an evening with my gentlemen friends, and they were quick to point out that women are not the only ones to face this kind of stereotyping, they just get stereotyped in the complete opposite way.  From what I discussed with my male friends, employers desire male employees to be married.

For the gentlemen, it seems to work like this;  a married man is a settled, responsible, stable man.  A stable man means a stable employee who is not likely to leave.  Why?  Because unlike with women, employers may assume that a man will stick with his job to support his wife and/or children.  See how that works?  Same coin, different side.

The reality is that not all married women want children, and not all married men are the sole providers for their families.  I know several stay at home dads who are doing an excellent job.  For women who do want children, employers should have a little faith that we can handle balancing work and home.  And, as a family law attorney I will be the first to tell you that marriage does NOT automatically equate with stability.  

READERS:  I have questions for you.  Have you experienced this kind of stereotyping in an interview, whether it was explicit or not?  How did you handle it?  And last but most important, how can we as young professionals, female and male, help each other be viewed in terms of our professional capabilities  to those few who make the assumptions discussed?

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Weekend Wardrobe Watch

Happy Sunday everyone!  This week in WWW, you can take an additional 25% off regularly priced items at!  My personal fav is this terry moto jacket.  Part blazer, part sweatshirt, part motorcycle jacket, this looks great for jamming around San Francisco on foot, or for those unfortunate Saturdays at the office.

My apologies for going dark this week.  My awesome mom had a birthday party Saturday evening, and a fair amount of planning was required on my end.  Back to normal this week!  :)