Careers and the employee life

Why lying in job interviews is bad – for both the interviewee and the interviewer

Photo by Tim Gouw on Unsplash

For interviewees:

Job interviews can be stressful situations. You’re looking to make a good, lasting impression on the person who has the power to decide whether you’ll move forward in the application process. Of course you don’t want to screw it up.

Still, if you say you’re proficient in a certain area when you know you’re not, that’s a terrible idea. And not just because we’ve been taught that lying is wrong.

If you do end up getting the job, people will figure out that you’re not as proficient in that skill as you made yourself out to be. You got in because you deliberately misrepresented yourself.

Your employer will then have to spend additional hours and resources training you in a skill which you claimed to have in your interview. That just doesn’t sound like the start of a good working relationship to me.
Moreover, if you truly do believe in your abilities, you shouldn’t have to lie to get the job. You need to trust yourself that if you don’t get the job, it simply wasn’t the right fit for your skillset. And that’s okay.

To interviewers:

I know it seems that the power is in your hands because you have the authority to hire, but think about it: you’re interviewing because you need good talent. You need skilled, hardworking employees to boost your business. So treat candidates with consideration and transparency.

That means no misleading them about “potential growth” when you know no promotions will be open in the foreseeable future. No talking about competitive salaries, only to have the candidates find out in the job offer stage that what you’re offering is below what you said. No promising of exciting projects they’ll be working on, if you know those projects aren’t coming to fruition anytime soon.

If you do manage to snag talent even with these tactics, I doubt they’ll be the most engaged employees around. And why should they be? You’ve played them from the start. You shouldn’t wonder why they’re leaving only a year into the job, when this isn’t what they signed up for.


Transparency between candidates and hiring managers is a difficult thing to maneuver, but it’s important to build a strong professional relationship right from the get-go.

Ela is a twentysomething who is constantly getting stuck in self-destructive behavior and bouts of low self-esteem. She struggles with depression and writes to relieve herself of her feelings. Sometimes she even blogs about other things like makeup and positivity. One of her pieces was published in the Inquirer Young Blood in October 2017. She likes cats, dogs, and sometimes even people.

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