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Friday, February 16, 2007

Lying in the Workplace

A recent survey of 2050 employees investigated the issue of lying in the workplace. The CareerBuilder survey indicated that 19% of workers admit they lied at the office at least once a week according to the “Honesty in the Workplace” survey.

What are the common underlying reasons that people lie?
• Fear-people are trying to avoid punishment for something they have done or perceived they have done.
• Habitual fear- in this case people are in constant fear of being punished and it becomes a reflex or habit. In this case they insist the lie is the truth. This is what we call compulsive lying
• Modeling- someone sees another person lying and getting away with it, and they become more prone to lying.
• Reward- in this case the truth won’t get you want you want, so you use a lie to get the reward or goal.

When workers lie at work, what do they say are the reasons for the deception?
• To appease a customer (26%)
• To cover up for a mistake (13%)
• To explain being late or an absence (8%)
• To cover up for a co-worker (8%)
• To get someone in trouble or to make themselves look better (5%)

What are the most common things workers say when they lie?
• “I don’t know how this happened” (20%)
• “I’ll have another call or I’ll call you right back (16%)
• “I’ve been sick or out of town” (10%)
• “ You look great (8%)
• “I didn’t get your email, voicemail, fax” (8%)

85% of managers say they will not promote someone who is caught lying. Remember honesty is the best policy and being deceitful can impact your career and your co-workers ability to trust you in everything you do or say.

Do you think lying in the workplace is as common as this research reports?

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