Looking too old? How an older age appearance reduces chances of getting hired

Kaufmann, Michèle Céline; Krings, Franciska; Sczesny, Sabine (2015). Looking too old? How an older age appearance reduces chances of getting hired. British journal of management, 27(4), pp. 727-739. Blackwell Publishing 10.1111/1467-8551.12125

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Building on theories of impression formation based on faces, this research investigates the impact of job candidates’ facial age appearance on hiring as well as the underlying mechanism. In an experiment, participants decided whether to hire a fictitious candidate aged 50 years, 30 years or without age information. The candidate’s age was signaled either via chronological information (varied by date of birth) or via facial age appearance (varied by a photograph on the résumé). Findings showed that candidates with older-appearing faces—but not chronologically older candidates—triggered impressions of low health and fitness, compared to younger-appearing candidates. These impressions reduced perceptions of person-job fit, which lowered hiring probabilities for older-appearing candidates. These findings provide the first evidence that trait impressions from faces are a determinant of age discrimination in personnel selection. They call for an extension of current models of age discrimination by integrating the effects of face-based trait impressions, particularly with respect to health and fitness.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

07 Faculty of Human Sciences > Institute of Psychology > Social Psychology and Social Neuroscience

UniBE Contributor:

Kaufmann, Michèle and Sczesny, Sabine

Subjects:

100 Philosophy > 150 Psychology

ISSN:

1045-3172

Publisher:

Blackwell Publishing

Funders:

[UNSPECIFIED] Stiftung Suzanne und Hans Biäsch zur Förderung der Angewandten Psychologie
[4] Swiss National Science Foundation

Language:

English

Submitter:

Michèle Kaufmann

Date Deposited:

09 Nov 2015 15:30

Last Modified:

06 Dec 2016 09:02

Publisher DOI:

10.1111/1467-8551.12125

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.72825

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/72825

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