Tiffany has been having a hard time at her new job. Her mind tells her that her Line Manager is nothing but difficult.  It will be easy to agree with her because superiors and bosses are often not the best painted people.

But Tiffany is reaping what she has sowed. Little did she know that she was under-performing for a job role , she had embellished lies to get.

Finding a job is challenging enough, but when your competition is beefing up their resumes with flat-out lies, it can make standing out even tougher. Whether you’re telling a little white lie or a blatant fabrication, getting caught could amount to career sabotage—especially since today’s technology and social media environments make it easier to get caught. And you will very, very likely get caught.

A recent survey compiled from the responses of applicants, hiring managers and employers revealed that;

  • 60% said they had mastery in skills they had basic knowledge of
  • >50% said they worked at some jobs longer in order to omit an employer
  • 45% gave a false reason for leaving a job
  • 42.25% made up relevant experiences
  • 41.25% used a director title when the actual title was a manager
  • 39.25% claimed they had a degree from a prestigious university instead of their own

Skills assessments

Especially if you’re applying for a skilled position that involves writing, coding, or designing, expect that an employer will test you before hiring you. Assessments can validate that you have the experience, as can asking appropriate behavioural questions during the interview.

Social media research

If you have a social media profile and a website, you’d better make sure that dates and basic facts match up to the resume you submit.

And, of course, there’s Google, so if there is some version of your resume or work history online, make sure it’s in sync with what you hand a prospective employer.

Background checks

It’s very easy for a hiring manager to contact your former employers and educational institutions to verify what’s on your resume. And even if employers somehow miss false or misleading information before an applicant is hired, the job seeker isn’t really ever off the hook. The resume liar is always in danger of getting caught and this could happen many years into their tenure.

How can you choose not to get haunted by your lies?

Stay honest. It sounds cliché, but honesty really is the best policy. Instead of using evasion or a complete distortion of facts, try the following strategies:

Rethink your design

A common way to format dates on your resume is to right justify or left justify them so they’re set apart from text. But lone dates surrounded by a river of white space draws the eye so it’s not a good choice for someone trying to downplay frequent job changes.

Instead, place the dates next to job titles or employer names so they blend in with the other content.

Get in front of a potential issue

You might be tempted to leave off a job in which your departure didn’t go well, but omissions are like lies and can be just as harmful. Sometimes bad things happen. If you’re honest and upfront, you can overcome that.

Remember the world gets faster and smaller by the day.

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