I have had bright red hair for as long as I care to remember, I have coloured my hair pink, blue, purple but once I coloured my hair the shade "Fire" in the Crazy Colour range there has been no going back for me.
My hair is naturally black and I now consider my firey red hair my natural colour rather than black. My red hair is very firmly part of my "identity" and even when I alter the shade slightly or experiment with going to a darker red people notice and ask me why I have decided deviate from my usual loud vivid shade. Red hair is just me.
The reason for the discussion of my hair colour stemmed from a conversation I had this week with my colleague, she asked me "if work made you colour your hair back to its natural colour would you quit your job". I pondered the question and answered that although I would be pretty upset to have to change the colour of my locks I wouldn't simply walk away from my career. However it got me thinking should it matter to my employer what colour my hair is? Does it effect my work performance? No. To clarify my employers have no issue with my hair colour despite it being a very very very loud shade of red (ie. there is no natural hair colour of that shade, the colour essentially is completely artificial) The conversation got me thinking, does your image really matter in a working environment?
Should employers care?
Usually when we are looking for job opportunity we put together a CV of experience and qualifications, using the CV as a selling tool to bag the job. It is at this initial stage that the employer doesn't know much about who we are apart from what is written on the CV they are reading.
Roll forward to the interview, this is where the employer gets to meet us and suss out how we translate from paper, are we all we say we are? The interview puts us in front of the potential employer and this where image could be make or break if they are not accepting to anything beyond the "norm".
I think it is important to be presentable at a job interview, I feel it is just good practice because I feel that if you are well presented it shows a potential new employer that you have put some effort in, it shows that you want to be there. However I don't think that if you have tattoos, piercings or an outlandish hair colour that you should change this or try and cover it up because these things are all personal choice and should be accepted as a part of who you are.
Do you agree, does image matter in the workplace?