Linguistic forms which refer to individuals impact mental representations of these individuals: When masculine generics are used, women tend to be cognitively underrepresented, whereas feminine–masculine word pairs are associated with a higher cognitive inclusion of women. The present research investigates whether linguistic forms affect women’s perceived lack of fit with leadership positions, which is particularly pronounced for high-status leadership positions. In a hiring-simulation experiment (N = 363), we tested the effects of different linguistic forms used in German-language job advertisements: (1) masculine forms (e.g., Geschäftsführer, ‘CEO, masc.’); (2) masculine forms with (m/f) (e.g., Geschäftsführer (m/w), ‘CEO, masc. (m/f)’); and (3) word pairs (e.g., Geschäftsführerin/Geschäftsführer, ‘CEO, fem./CEO, masc.’). The job ads announced either a high- or low-status leadership position. Results showed that female applicants were perceived to fit less well with the high-status position than male applicants when either the masculine or the masculine form with (m/f) was used––even though they were perceived to be equally competent. However, female and male applicants were perceived as fitting the high-status leadership position similarly well when word pairs were used.