“Men and women also gave the same most common reason for not applying, and it was by far the most popular, twice as common as any of the others, with 41% of women and 46% of men indicating it was their top reason: ‘I didn’t think they would hire me since I didn’t meet the qualifications, and I didn’t want to waste my time and energy.’
“In other words, people who weren’t applying believed they needed the qualifications not to do the job well, but to be hired in the first place. They thought that the required qualifications were…well, required qualifications. They didn’t see the hiring process as one where advocacy, relationships, or a creative approach to framing one’s expertise could overcome not having the skills and experiences outlined in the job qualifications.
“What held them back from applying was not a mistaken perception about themselves, but a mistaken perception about the hiring process.”
Why Women Don’t Apply for Jobs Unless They’re 100% Qualified, HBR, by Tara Sophia Mohr, August 24, 2015