Monday, 5 October 2009

Beginning to wonder ...

... whether my naive view that people would consider me on my skills and experience rather than the fact that I'm transgendered and look like some weird, ugly, freak, was just too optimistic.

I've had several rejections after face-to-face interviews now and, while there was only one incident where someone clearly could not hide their shock at seeing me, the lack of any feedback at all, or fairly lack-lustre reasoning, is making me think that I'm at a disadvantage because of my appearance and gender (well the trans nature of it).

While I can understand that companies are sifting through lots of CVs and conducting many interviews, I do think it is extremely rude and unhelpful to not provide any feedback at all, particularly as, in my case, I have travelled a great distance to get to some of the locations (and done it several times). I personally would obviously benefit a great deal from feedback as it has been a long time since I interviewed and my situation then was alot different.

As I said, I do recognise that the bad manners approach of not providing feedback, or even giving someone a definitive "no" and simple reason why they haven't been successful, is something that seems to apply in alot of cases, but I really can't help thinking that there may be that extra reason for me; "Frankly we think you're a weirdo and you'd upset/confuse/frighten too many people here so we don't want to hire you". Sounds extreme but given the number of looks I get from the general populace it's hardly an unsurprising view to suspect.

I'm not asking for special treatment or any amount of positive discrimination here, I'm very much against that as it's simply patronising and self-defeating. But some consideration for what I've gone through over the past few years would be appreciated, as well as allowances made for that fact that my self-confidence has taken a hammering would also be most helpful.

Being trans does not affect my ability to do my job, in some ways quite the contrary. However, I'm beginning to suspect that it does quite significantly affect my ability to get a job in the first place.

[ Update: Two points to make here. The comments above in no way apply to my current employer, and I should also state that one of the companies that I was indirectly criticising were not being rude but simply slow, they have actually returned with feedback. One final point as well; I don't name companies I've had dealings with here, that would be unfair, and I certainly don't publish who I work for! Also see the disclaimer at the top - my opinions here remember ]

1 comment:

Carolyn Ann said...

The lack of feedback is not something I'd worry, or even think, about. It's par for the course; getting a simple "sorry, we're not interested" is akin to pulling hen's teeth.

Congratulations on the job! :-)

Carolyn Ann