In a job interview, the interviewer asks you questions and you have to come up with answers. The interviewer is trying to find out if you’re a good fit for the company or not. You might be tempted to lie in order to make yourself look better, but that’s a bad idea.
We have all heard the old saying that honesty is always the best policy. But what if you are applying for a job and you are not 100% qualified for it? What if you lie about your qualifications because you need to pay your bills? Is it worth it to lie in order to get a job? The idea of lying during a job interview is not something new. With the number of applicants for each job opening, it is not surprising that some people do what they can to get the job.
The job interview is a pivotal point in the hiring process. It is the time when you are able to make an impression on your potential employer. Your honesty can help you get hired, but dishonesty can get you fired. But what if it’s only a little lie? or a slight exaggeration of the truth? In this article, we’ll take a closer look at lying in job interviews.
Can I lie in a job interview?
When it comes to job interviews, there are things you should not lie about. Important things that will be obvious you lied about when you start the job.
However, it is not always necessary to tell the truth in a job interview. It is okay to embellish or exaggerate your resume to a small degree, but you should avoid lying about your qualifications and work experience.
It is also better to be vague with some questions and answer them in a way that will impress the interviewer rather than mislead them.
The following is a list of some of the most common lies that people tell in job interviews.
- “I am punctual.”
- “I never miss deadlines.”
- “I don’t need to take breaks during the day.”
- “I’m not interested in other jobs.”
These are all “little lies” and generic statements that many people would make in a job interview to impress the hiring manager. It is unlikely you will be caught out by saying these things. However, if you were to say you are proficient in a vital skill the job requires when you are not, you might be able to lie your way into receiving a job offer but wouldn’t likely be at the company long.
Employers want people who will be a good cultural fit with the company, and getting caught lying in a job interview is not a good way to achieve this.
You should be honest and upfront with your qualifications and skills, but also put some creativity and genuine thought into your answers. For further job interview advice check out our articles 13 Top Job Interview Tips and The Ultimate Guide on How to Prepare For A Job Interview.
Should I lie during a job interview?
Some people think that lying during a job interview is not a big deal, while others believe that it’s a very serious matter. The truth is that there are certain lies that can be forgiven, while others will cost you your career if you get caught.
You could be forgiven for telling small lies or stretching the truth just a little in a high-pressure job interview situation where you are desperate to land the job. But with enough prior preparation, you can remove the need to tell lies by being sure of the answers you want to give to any given question.
Reasons we feel we might need to lie include insecure feelings over the strength of our skills or experience. But by putting some thought into our answers prior to the interview we can work out the words and phrases we want to use to sell what we do have to the best of our ability.
Food for thought? We’ll let you decide.
Why you shouldn’t lie in a job interview?
There are many consequences of lying during an interview. Some of the consequences include:
- You may not get hired for the job you were interviewed for because you lied about your qualifications, skills, or experience and couldn’t give satisfactory answers to questions relating to them
- If you make significant lies on your resume and get offered a job, it is likely that you will be fired or asked to resign from the company once they find out that you lied.
- If you are working with a recruitment agency and they are informed you have told lies, they could refuse to work with you as you risk damaging their reputation
Possible outcomes of lying in a job interview where you successfully received a job offer are:
- An expectation that you can do the skills you said you had experience with
- Expectations of the level of performance and output you will deliver
- Business plans and strategies changed around the knowledge and skills you are bringing to the team
Employers can make big plans for you and your career ahead of you starting with them, based upon the information you have given them that they believe to be true. Revealing to them that you were untruthful can be really hurtful to them and set their business back.
What to do after getting caught lying in a job interview?
By the time you have been found to have lied in your job interview, it might be too late and your new employer could already have decided that they want you to leave.
However, some of the things you can do after being caught lying during an interview are:
- Apologize and admit that it was a mistake
- Offer to provide more information about your skills and experience
- Explain why you lied
- Offer to provide references from former employers