Job Seekers Put Themselves in Window Displays Hoping to Get Hired

Unemployment in Europe has recently hit record highs, and although Denmark has been shielded from the eurozone’s economic problems thanks to its low public debt, qualified professionals are still finding it tough to get a job. Danish marketing firm Reputation Copenhagen has come up with an ingenious way of helping academics get noticed – putting them on display in storefront windows.

Many highly-trained professionals, ranging from former CEOs to lawyers and tax experts are currently finding it increasingly difficult to find decent employment on the Danish job market. Some of them have been trying for years, leaving their resumes with dozens of companies, without ever hearing back from them, and are now at a point where they are willing to try anything. Even putting themselves in display windows like mannequins, hoping to get noticed by someone in need of their services. Alexander Peitersen, managing director of Reputation Copenhagen came up with the idea of using his company’s office as a storefront for the campaign, as there are many businesses nearby that might be interested in the talent on display. So he set up a small desk, put up the “an available academic is sitting here” sign, and asked the unemployed to just sit in the windows like merchandise. It seems like a pretty desperate measure, but at least it works; according to the agency’s website 3 of the job-seekers in their window display got a job in a day or two.


Photo: Carsten Loland/Reputation Copenhagen

“I’m willing to try anything,” Hannibal Camel Holt, an unemployed political scientist, told the Wall Street Journal. Despite his qualifications and speaking six languages, he has been looking for work on and off for the last four years. “I feel like a monkey…in a cage as people walk by and just stare at me,” the former tax ministry employee said while working at his desk and occasionally glancing at passersby hoping for a positive reaction. The ingenious campaign has proven a hit with both unemployed professionals and headhunters, so Reputation Copenhagen has extended the two-week run, to keep up with demand. Company representatives or business professionals interested in the academics on display can scan a QR code to watch a presentation of the person sitting behind the glass, check out their LinkedIn profile or come inside and have a talk with them.


Photo: Carsten Loland/Reputation Copenhagen

Peitersen says he came up with the idea after realizing human resource managers get hundreds of job applications every day, which look more or less the same, and that creative thinking is required in order to increase the chances of finding employment. Apart from companies interested in qualified job-seekers, the stunt has also attracted the attention of both local and international media.


The concept of using real-life people in window displays to attract attention isn’t new. It’s been used for years in Amsterdam’s Red Lights district and just last year French dating service Adopte Un Mec opened a pop-up boutique where ladies could window-shop for dates.

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