When the job candidate is a woman

December 16, 2005

My office manager and I, both males, interviewed a female candidate for a billing position. After she left, the office manager quipped that he hoped we hadn't intimidated her. He was just joking, but the possibility never crossed my mind. When a job candidate is a woman, should one of the female partners join the office manager at the interview?

Q: My office manager and I, both males, interviewed a female candidate for a billing position. After she left, the office manager quipped that he hoped we hadn't intimidated her. He was just joking, but the possibility never crossed my mind. When a job candidate is a woman, should one of the female partners join the office manager at the interview?

A: Not necessarily, although the presence of a female interviewer may make it less likely that an unsuccessful candidate would attribute her rejection to sex discrimination. But the best way to avoid problems is to focus on the functions of the job, ask the same questions regardless of whether the candidate is a man or woman, and make sure your final hiring decision isn't related to gender.