Top White Lies Employees Tell in the Workplace

April 24, 20201:05 pm1136 views
Top White Lies Employees Tell in the Workplace
Top White Lies Employees Tell in the Workplace

Everyone would agree that lying is a bad thing, but none could totally avoid it. Psychologist Robert Feldman found that most of us lie two to three times every 10 minutes. Some lies being told are relatively minor, such as agreeing with the person with whom we are speaking to. Other lies are more extreme, such as falsely claiming to be the star of a rock band.

In the workplace, white lies are more common and they are hard to detect until a later time. Surveying more than 1,000 professionals across a variety of industries, SimplyHired found that managers are more likely to lie than entry-level or associate-level employees. Approximately 37 percent of managers said they were prone to lying at least once a week. Meanwhile, 28 percent of entry-level employees and 30 percent of associate employees said they were lying at the same amount of period. 

See also: SPY at Work! How to Detect One?

The most common white lies

Based on the survey, the most common white lies are told to help the speaker get out of work. Sixty percent of respondents who admitted to lying said they fibbed about being sick and forty-six used the excuse of having an appointment for not being able to come in. It was also reported that male workers were more likely than women to justify lying if it boosted their chance at a raise or promotion. Other notable white lies from the statistics are as follows: 

  • Employees are not truthful about how satisfied they are with their salary, job and other work-life matters. 
  • Employees are also lying about taking credit for an idea that was not theirs.
  • Managers lie most frequently about budget constraints, deadlines and credit for an idea that was not theirs. 

Those who lie usually less satisfied at work 

Joey Morris, who conducted the survey for SimplyHired, found an interesting fact that people who told more white lies (at least once per week) were usually less satisfied at work. From the 1,000 more respondents, 41 percent cited that they are not satisfied with their work. And those who said that they are “extremely satisfied” at work were far less likely to lie at work. 

Consequences for not addressing the white lies 

Since white lies are told solely to cover-up dissatisfaction at the workplace, it can be implied that telling seemingly harmless or justified half-truth can cause bad corporate karma. Albeit white lies might seem harmless, it could lead to decreased morale and overall dissatisfaction which affect productivity and performance at work. Consequently, little harmless lies could disrupt overall business operations. 

Stop the white lies now, encourage employees to reveal the truth. Here’s how:
  • Don’t micromanage 

Among the white lies employees told are “traffic on my way” and “I’m working on it right now” when asked about a task or a project assigned to them, indicating that employees become defensive to micromanagement. The antidote to micromanagement would be helping employees to prioritise tasks, asking feedback from employees, giving support, and to not overreact when things do not go as expected. 

  • Build a fun productive company culture 

Company culture is more than just team-building and social events. But it might need more than this. If your employees are faking sick leave and increasing their absenteeism rate, it is maybe because they are overworked and stressed. Thus, offering flexibility, a private rest day, or massage treatment would show your employees that you value their time and effort. 

Read also: Hiring Tips: How to Recognise a Fake Diploma

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