Tall people need jobs too. Contrary to popular belief, we are not all basketball players and models so we have to have regular day to day jobs like everyone else. It would be great if we were just given money just for being tall but unfortunately we need to make a living. I have not been working full time for that long (almost 3 years now) but I have found that tall people are met with a unique set of challenges when entering the workforce.
First thing the tall girl has to worry about is the interview. Interviews are already awkward and nerve-wracking to begin with but then adding extreme height into it makes it doubly so I think. I always feel nervous in interviews not so much because I am worried about getting the job, it is more about how this interviewer is going to react when they see me for the first time. You see, you can’t tell how tall a person is over the phone or through emails. I can just imagine how shocking it is to see me for the first time. Especially if I get up from being seated. Add in the fact that I am wearing heels on said interview, I bet they are close to having a heart attack. Of course they can’t really say anything (at least no one has ever asked me about my height at an interview) for manners sake but you can see it I think. Or maybe it is just the pessimistic paranoia talking.
Now let’s look at the flipside of that coin. Studies have shown that tall people are viewed as more confident and smart. Now a tall woman in heels screams confidence. I think when people see how confident you are in yourself and appearance they can’t help but be confident in you too. So being tall is a definite asset in that regard.
On every interview I’ve been on I’ve worn heels even if it took me wearing flats for the walk there and changing into heels before I get into the building. I may get the side eye but hey, you gotta do what you gotta do. Come to think of it, on every interview I’ve been on, I’ve gotten the job so take from that what you will.
Now let’s move on to actually working in the office. I think the toughest part of working in an office for a tall girl like myself is working in a cubicle. Most offices are broken up into cubicles to save on space but unfortunately cubicles aren’t very tall girl friendly. Cubicles are cramped for a normal person but add an extra 10 inches of leg and arm the problem is compounded.
When I was an intern, I didn’t have enough room underneath my desk to stretch out my legs so I got cramps in my legs. Sometimes I would just to move my chair back to stretch, thus blocking the walkway for my cube mates. On top of that, I had to keep my chair low to the ground in order to be eye level to my computer screen. Needless to say getting up and down (from the floor basically) was a challenge.
Luckily in my new position, I have a lot of room to stretch out. Although I still have to keep my chair a little low, the legroom more than makes up for it. I look forward to the day when I have my corner office with the huge windows. For no other reason but for the space.
Office bathrooms, well public bathrooms in general, are not made for the tall girl. I for one, am taller than the stalls in the public bathrooms. I don’t understand why they are so low! To avoid seeing my coworkers and them seeing me, I stoop down so I am hidden from view. I find making eye contact over the stall with my fellow office workers very awkward so I avoid it all costs. I mean, the point of the stall is to have some privacy, but it is not exactly private if you can clearly see my head floating above the stall.
Then there are the tall jokes. Tall jokes are a given. There is no escaping it. At least these are less annoying than when a stranger makes jokes because you actually know these people; you have built relationships and friendships (hopefully, anyway) so it is a bit easier to deal with. As friends though, they will try to use your height to their advantage. Like the usual getting things off of high shelves or using you as a landmark at office parties.
So what has been your experience being tall and working? Any interesting stories you want to share? Comment below!
Until next time,