Research has shown that “more attractive” workers can earn between 7 and 13 percent more money than colleagues who do not take as much time with their appearance.
As much as we try to pretend it doesn’t, appearance matters in our society. Hooters is an entire restaurant chain that has freely admitted that beauty is an important factor of its hiring process. In 2010, a Newsweek study gave a startling statistic: 64 percent of hiring managers across the corporate board believe that appearance is an important factor to consider when looking at potential candidates.
In my opinion, the recent viral explosion of the video of homeless United States Army veteran Jim Wolf getting a makeover puts a new spin on the idea of one’s appearance. In less than three minutes, Wolf’s appearance completely transforms in front of our very eyes. Yes, he has a team of beauty experts working to improve his appearance, but that isn’t really the focus of the video.
Even as the hairstylist cleans up his hairdo and beard and another expert helps him into a stunning suit, Wolf looks scared, anxious, and uncertain. He gives a smile before looking in the mirror that does not meet his eyes. Once he gets a chance to look in the mirror, however, it seems like a light is turned on from within him. And the first thing he does is stand up and hug members of the makeover team.
The video ends by saying that Wolf has a new lease on life, he currently lives on his own, and he attends Alcoholics Anonymous meetings for the first time in his life. All it took to get him on a new path was a glimpse of how he could look.
Many experts have said that you should dress for the job that you want not the one you have. Although I do not think it is fair for someone to get hired because they have bleached blonde hair and a model figure, I think this video of Jim Wolf finally gives a valid explanation of why appearance matters. Because it changes the way we feel about ourselves.
At the beginning of the video, Wolf looks like a homeless man. He is shaggy, dirty, and unkempt. Nothing in his life changes as he sits in the chair and gets his haircut and colored. But as soon as he looks in the mirror, he becomes a different person.