Integrity is something I hold people to the highest degree; without integrity, there is no trust and it can cause people to routinely question someone’s motives, performance, etc.
I recently came across an infographic outlining information on resume lying. You know, inflations of the truth on resumes ranging from salaries, employment dates, job duties, you name it. According to the information in the infographic, 46% of resumes submitted contain some sort of false information. This statistic is alarming, but in my opinion, not surprising. It is not surprising to me because societal accountability has been on the decline over the years – we are more and more turning a blind eye versus holding people accountable, allowing the blame to be placed elsewhere.
Accountability is key as it sets the foundation for people to learn from less than favorable situations, which is not always a bad thing. It is necessary for humans to experience some situations head-on to get the true reality the behavior or performance will not be tolerated. For instance, let’s just say you were to hire someone who successfully cleared through the interview process and appeared to be a rock star with their resume and interview. However shortly into their tenure with the organization, you quickly begin to realize the truth may not be what was told (i.e., not able to execute knowledge and skills around succession planning, but the job you hired this person for needed someone strong in succession planning for rollout in the organization). This situation now causes you to ask questions to dig deeper into why there is a gap with the performance and what the employee expressed to you in the interview.
So as the job market continues to open, here are a couple of recommendations for both interviewer and job seeker.
- Do not inflate your resume to help you stand out!
- If your resume needs help, hire a resume consultant to assist you with formatting, wording, etc. to draw the recruiter in
- Play heavy to your strengths and let those standout in your resume and interview
- Recognize your areas for opportunity and develop yourself; don’t rely on others to develop you – you must make the first move!
- Evaluate the candidate’s resume to see if experience corresponds to positions/time in field
- Someone who has led a full system rollout and only have six months in role right of college is unlikely; therefore, further questioning may be needed
- Ask questions that probe for specific examples of detailed experience; do not be afraid to ask clarifying questions if something does not add up
- Utilize multiple interviewers who touch on similar questions to determine if experience/knowledge/skills line up across the board with everyone
- Question numbers detailed in resumes; numbers are always easy to inflate and if mixed in with other information that demonstrates positive results, it is highly unlikely someone would question a lot. So when someone tells you they increased sales by 200%, how did they get to this increase?
- Watch for body language and verbal tone when asking questions and how the candidate responds; if someone is overly nervous or will not look at you when responding, something could be up
Know I am not saying it is necessary to be suspect with every candidate resume that comes across your desk, but it is important you get the right fit. Do not be oblivious to checking facts for the sake of getting a warm body because the position has been open for an extended period of time. Especially when 70% of college students said they would lie on their resume to get the job they want.
Employees who have high integrity and demonstrate such are less likely to have performance issues from the standpoint of trying to hide their deficiencies inflated on their resume/in the interview to get the job.
Let’s hold people accountable and start shifting behavior/performance accountability!