Maria Lloyd: Ladies, Looks Aren’t Enough to Keep a Job

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Photography by NHOPHOTOS; Chicago, IL

by Maria Lloyd

It seems there has been a surge in adulterous scandals resulting in large pay-offs to mistresses since the economy has tanked. Apparently, using your looks or vagina for financial security is the new “thing” to do. Sleeping with a married, successful man in hopes of soliciting the affair for a large amount of cash may sound intriguing- in theory. The reality is, your looks will only take you so far.

Now, if your goal is to be solely dependent upon another person for your financial well-being, disregard everything I’ve said. Your only hope is to marry rich and/or to become a mistress and hope for a large payout when you rat on the guy. If you wish to acquire wealth at  your own expense, continue reading. I had a conversation with a top-level executive regarding ways women can accelerate their careers without having to use their looks and lose their dignity in the process.


Below are his recommendations for women who wish to excel in a sexist workplace without having to rely on their looks and/or their body:

1. Dress like a man.

I must admit, I initially frowned when he gave me this recommendation. My thinking was that he literally wants women to dress like a man, but I was wrong. He recommended wearing pants that are loose fitting around the hips, a collared shirt that is buttoned as to not show any cleavage, a blazer that has a loose fit but doesn’t appear to be too big, and closed-toe shoes. He said women who dress sexy for work are nothing more than a distraction and rarely ever accelerate their careers.

2. Cut the small talk.

He recommends having a sense of humor, but not allowing colleagues at work to become too comfortable with you. He mentioned seeing a plethora of women fall victim to the “she’s cool” conversation between males in the workplace- which often led to speculation and a bad rapport. He recommended keeping conversations about your personal life out of the workplace. Lastly, he said do not trust female coworkers, as she may be gossiping with a male coworker about your personal matters.

3. Always make your manager ‘look good’.

He recommended the quickest way to accelerate your career is to make sure your manager keeps a great rapport within the company. When your manager is known for being one of the best to do his/her job, you ultimately will be acknowledged for helping him/her acquire that rapport. He said to quickly learn your manager’s weaknesses and strengths so that you can help him/her excel in areas where he/she fails.


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  1. Herman Hawkins Jr.

    December 17, 2012 at 10:38 am

    Mistresses who get into affairs for money are nothing more than refined prostitutes.

  2. Barbara

    December 17, 2012 at 12:04 pm


    You areexactly right. I do wonder though, if the writer of this article is referring to what “Whites” do, instead of what Blacks do. I can’t imagine an educated person becoming a “prostitute” after the slavery we have already endured.

  3. Onesilverbac

    March 3, 2013 at 10:12 pm

    The old ways seem to work best, black or white if you have all of the right attributes you know it and if so incline go for it!

    I know of two black ladies “fine” who have at different companies had upper management come on to them, now these sisters have it going on knowledge wise and will go places without compromising them selves.

    A woman who is less secure may have accepted the offer.


    March 3, 2013 at 11:10 pm

    Stop hating! Good looks is already a show of intelligence for a black woman. Furthermore, when the first suggestion is to dress like a man- red flags should’ve went up for any truly self-respecting sister! Who wrote this a lesbian? A tranny? Or just a mean, dog-faced broad with no such options who is hates beauty and behind on her student loans? hahaha!


      March 3, 2013 at 11:11 pm

      excuse the typo

  5. M1

    March 4, 2013 at 12:54 am

    The statement was not to dress like a man, the detailed clarification was to NOT wear booty hugging pants, and inappropriate cleavage revealing stuff in the workplace, and it seems to me that unless you’re selling booty for a living, it makes damn good sense.

    • PinkRose

      March 4, 2013 at 5:46 am

      Agreed! In my profession (scientific research) this advice is spot on, especially if you’re already an attractive Black woman.

  6. Ishmar Muhammad

    March 4, 2013 at 6:10 am

    It’s like Advice you give to a Black Female Singer your already Beautiful & talented “Keep your Legs Closed” and the World is yours! What’s up with our people trying to use ignorance to Challenge Truth! It’s some New Fools on Deck lol If your a Professional Male or Females Especially be Buttoned up right to your Neck if your a Woman you’ll get respect! Your Clothing says everything about you in the Workplace! If your about something Dress like you got sense! I’m not a Whore! Why are you wearing a Ho’s Uniform? If you saw me in a Policeman’s Uniform I most likely am a Pig! Clean it up my peeps!

  7. Antonio

    November 12, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    Women whom are interested in a married man are usually in it for some type of material or monetary pay-off. They both know what the other wants. As a former employer, I’m in total agreement with the article. Many times it can be hard to concentrate on the job to be worked on, when there is eye candy all around, even more so when it appears your attention has become the main focus.

  8. Devon

    December 25, 2013 at 6:01 pm

    Oh please the so called top level executive is an asshole. Black women already have the stigma of being “unfeminine” attached to us (thanks loudmouth, angry hooligan). The key is dressing in PROFESSIONAL YET FEMININE ATTIRE. There are beautiful tailored suits and dresses women can wear and look sharp yet ladylike. A nice pair of classic pumps handbag and accessories and shes good to go. One thing I would suggest…women with loc braids and long hair real or fake, should pull it back in a ponytail or chignon, its a more sleek and professional look. And to the sistas with heads fulls of beautiful big kinky coily hair, upsweeps sre perfect for the professional look.

    • Khrystle

      January 21, 2014 at 8:54 pm

      Devon, this is the best advice of all. Dressing like a man is so 80’s & 90’s and it’s no longer necessary for professional success. Even the fashion columns tell women that they can dress feminine and professional at work. The writer is definitely dating herself.

    • lnw

      May 25, 2014 at 2:27 am

      Where did you find the info about how to wear your hair? In a white fashion magazine? White women let their hair hang freely at work so why can’t Black women?

  9. lnw

    May 25, 2014 at 2:23 am

    Y’all are so missing the point. It’s not so much about dressing like a man rather dressing like you’re not an attention seeking employee with other motives (I.e. wearing tight pants shirts and loss cut tops to get attention from the boss). I agree with this article 100% and no I’m not ugly and lonely as most of you would assume. I believe if you’re truly beautiful and confident in yourself then you don’t have to show off your body to the world. Showing cleavage doesn’t make you feminine. How you carry yourself does. Those who think less of this article will be the ones who probably never advance further than their current position.

    And to whomever it was that said good looks is already a sign of intelligence for a black woman… Dear God what world are you living in? I know SOOO many physically attractive women who are dumb as rocks and plenty of women on the opposite end of the spectrum who are close to geniuses. Looks have ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with how smart you are. However, intelligence is a sign of beauty.

    I don’t think I’ve ever been so frustrated by comments before.

  10. DW

    May 25, 2014 at 7:17 am

    Adultery is never going away, that’s nothing new. And every women with sex appeal is not looking for a pay day either. I have excelled tremendously in my field with no issues because of my moral and ethical standards that are already preset. There are ways to dress sexy with class and not disrespect yourself and the workplace. My belief is how you dress is not a determinate on how intelligent women are or how much/little women respect themselves. In the workplace, it’s about meeting expectations and performing in your career at a level that will allow you to excel and become an invaluable commodity to your team, leadership, client, etc. Personally, how I look doesn’t matter because what I do for my company to meet our business bottomline makes me a distraction everyday in a positive way.:-)

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