Friday, September 14, 2012

Should Stores Be Required To Hire Men To Sell Hosiery?

I think that this merits a bit of discussion, especially since Jessica, of Fantasy Stockings, in Vancouver, asked me to. :^) Some of you probably remember my interest in working for Wolford. They declined. Fogal showed enough interest that they offered me a chance to interview for when a job would open up. So, there is enough interest and opportunity for the issue to be discussed.

An important issue to consider is the other kind of clothing that the stores sell. If they sell bras, that could affect whether or not a woman would feel comfortable with guys in the store. Therefore, I will touch on the idea of guys selling bras, and fitting women for bras. As you read about it, think of it as being similar to selling hosiery. Selling hosiery requires less staff-customer intimacy than fitting a bra, but the kind of intimacy is very similar.

Also, bear in mind that although this blog is going to try to convince you of something, it is more about presenting the issues that we have to face, and about trying to give us options.

When you comment, please try to subscribe to the responses, so that you can participate in discussions.

First of all, there is the issue of men's ability to do it. Yes, men are fully capable of doing it. After all, if men can be gynecologists, then there is nothing that will stop us from becoming experts in a female garment. We are not computers, yet we can be computer experts right? The hosiery industry is filled with men who are passable as hosiery sales reps. Of those men in the industry, there are experts who understand the beauty and fit of hosiery. Men have definitely proven themselves.

Secondly, there is also the issue of legalities. Do stores have the legal right to discriminate against men for any reason? I do not know of any. I realize that many laws do favour women, but I do not know of any specific laws that allow stores to decline employment to men, just because they are men. Do you know of any laws? If so, then please fill me in.

Thirdly, there is the issue of current staffing. Before we start telling other stores what to do, let us imagine that you own a store that is currently staffed by only women. 1 of them is a student, who desperately needs the work in this down economy. Another is a great employee, which shows leadership potential. This potential will come in handy when you intend to promote somebody to assistant manager. Then you have your assistant manager, whom you and your other employees love, and you have you, whom you are not able to fire.

So, imagine a rule which says that all stores must have at least 1 man and 1 woman, if there are 2 staff members or contractors. Imagine that your business is running well, with no serious complaints. There is just enough profit to cover all expenses, including salary. That would be pretty stressful, would it not? Who would you fire, when all the customers are already satisfied? The student needs the job, and the other staff members work well. You do not have enough money to hire the guy as a fifth employee. What do you do? I think that I might have to fire the student. I would love to read your responses, even though this situation will probably never happen. I think that it is worth thinking about, because it forces us to think about who we value more.

Fourthly, there is also the issue of how men feel about other men giving the wives a bra fitting. I am sure that we can trust men to be good gynecologists and family doctors, but we do need to sort through this. If women want equality, then they need to sort through this, as well. Otherwise, they will always be feeble, in my mind. After all, why would you defend discrimination against women, and then advocate it against guys? When it comes to bra fitting, nobody is forcing women to be fitted by a guy. Women can go to another store.

Do not get me wrong! I understand that there are religious issues involved. If you think that your religion is right, and that women should not be fitted by guys, then speak out! I understand. I am willing to support it. Bear in mind, that in order to strengthen your opinion, you need to be consistent, in that you should try to separate men from women in as many ways as possible. Should men be allowed to be gynecologists? If not, then what do we do with all the men who are currently gynecologists? What about those who are being trained for it, and have a huge student debt? Should they be required to quit, and then continue with another field of study?Should breast surgeons be only women? Should women doctors only serve women?

1 thing that I like about the Bible is the nuanced phrasing. The Lord Jesus Christ said in the sermon on the mount, that if we look at a woman to lust, then we have already committed adultery. He obviously had no problems with just casually looking at people as we pass them in the streets. He had a problem with lust. So, that means that men could fit women for bras, if they could look at women without lusting.

An interesting aspect of this women-only part of this discussion is that part of it comes from the traditional parts of our society. At 1 time, doctors were only/mostly men. Who would have served the women? Men! If we want to preserve 1 aspect of tradition, then we have to commit to letting go of the other aspect. We cannot expect women to be served by women, while prohibiting them from those jobs.

I think that most traditional people do not really care all that much about the battle of the sexes. I think that for them, they just need to get used to the idea of men fitting women. This will allow women to get used to the idea of men selling hosiery. However, it is a mental hurdle that we men have to knock down and not just overcome.

Lastly, and more importantly, what happens when the company could lose potential customers. Even if the company wants to hire men, should it? Hiring men is not an automatic guarantee of profit.

I am in a very awkward position. I want to advocate for the rights of businesses to discriminate based on sex, so that there are women-only staff, women-only gyms, men-only barber shops, women-only hair salons, men-only golf clubs, etc. However, having women-only without any men-only is garbage. I also advocate for men's rights to sell hosiery and such garments. I think that the best balance is the let the businesses decide based on sex, and customer preferences.

Thanks for coming to this blog post. Please comment below, even if it is just letting us know whether or not you agree. Jessica, of Fantasy Stockings, said that she wants to blog about the topic, so check her blog in the next little while.

Thank you for reading!

1 comment:

  1. Eugene, here's my response.