In Canada, we have a few questions that an interviewer is not allowed to ask, by law. Such things as age, race, gender, smoker, and basically anything that could disqualify a person from completing a task that have nothing to do with ability. As a person who has hired a fair amount of people in my life, knowing that there are forbidden questions allows me to focus on a persons traits, experience, and of course personality fit for the required position. To re-iterate, it allows me to gain insight into them as a worker rather than allowing any prejudices or misconceptions to cloud my judgment. And in today’s day and age, there is zero reason that the same line of thinking should not be extended to an online dating opener.
Opening a message with “are you half black?” or “have you ever been with a well endowed male?” (both real examples from my last week of online dating alone) do not make for very good conversation starters. Not only are these yes or no questions, but they are questions that just don’t have any merit for setting up a first meeting. If these factors are important to who you are as an individual, by all means write about them in a positive way on your profile. But the whole point of a first message is to get a dialogue started. Asking these forbidden interview questions is a sure fire way to stop things before they ever get started.
Don’t alienate something that could be amazing based on your prejudices. In fact, the best success stories often come from taking a risk on someone that is outside of your norm. And the same is true about the hiring process. Pre-determined no’s close us off to new experiences, people, and basically a whole lot of amazing adventures. So retire the notion of just getting something out of the way in your opening message. Try instead an open ended question, and get that other person to start engaging with you rather than shutting you down.
For more online dating tips, please check out my online dating tips blog section!