Skip Nav
How to Stay Focused in a World Full of Distractions
Budget Tips
21 Little Ways to Save Money Every Day
Budget Tips
7 Options For Finding Cheap (or Free!) Fitness Classes

Lies We Tell at Work

Are We Really All a Bunch of Liars?

A recent article from the career experts at Careerbuilder is called "Five lies we all tell at work," and I'm wondering if the title is assuming too much. They suggest that lying is just as much a part of workplace culture as gossiping, but reinforce that we'd all be better off telling the truth for the sake of a healthier work environment. Here are the five lies they say permeate the workplace along with their recommendations for improvement. Tell me if you're guilty of lying in the ways they've outlined, or maybe you're a cubicle angel?

  1. I'd be happy to: Not always said with sincerity, it's important to learn how to prioritize tasks given to you by your boss. If you're not sure, ask them which tasks are most urgent — not only will that help you do your job better, but it will remind your boss how much you have on your plate.
  2. No, I don't have any questions: Instead of staying silent, ask questions that will help you do a better job and preface them by saying that you just want to make sure you understand everything.
  3. My alarm didn't go off: Be honest about why you're late and be armed with an explanation for why you're always late if that's the case. Another option is to simply apologize for being late and get straight to work.
  4. I'm not sick — it's just allergies: If staying home when you're sick isn't an option because you have too much work or don't have any days left to take off, they recommend telling co-workers, "I hope I'm not coming down with a cold; I have many things to do." (This really doesn't make sense to me at all!)
  5. I'm right on schedule: Instead of telling this lie about a project you're behind with, tell your boss "I am working on it," which lets them know you're hard at work without lying about how much you've accomplished.
Join The Conversation
jennjennnbubba jennjennnbubba 9 years
def. guilty of all of them at one time or another but I still use #4. I do have severe allergies though but sometimes I think I should have went and worked through it.
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
So true...
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 9 years
1) I have made myself stop being the "people pleaser" that i was including telling people I was happy to do something when i clearly wasnt 2)I actually ask too many questions probably!! 3)While i rarely sleep in, when i have I have said "i am running late" and just lived with the consequences. 4)I do have bad allergies, so its not lying! although i have lied about being sick plenty of times, i just use the "migraine, stomach issues, or just plain i am not feeling well" 5)since the majority of this office is rarely on schedule, i dont lie about that
foxgirlie04 foxgirlie04 9 years
This made me think of Dont Tell Mom The Babysitter's Dead and how Christina Applegate is constantly telling her boss, "Im right on top of that Rose."
bigestivediscuit bigestivediscuit 9 years
I definitely ask a lot of questions! Because I work with legal documents, I'd rather get it right and ask a billion questions (my bosses don't mind) than pretend I understand, get it wrong and be in big trouble later!
hmcmcd hmcmcd 9 years
I don't think I have ever had a job where someone who was sick, pretended it was allergies?? Usually we would just quarantine that person and nobody would eat lunch with them until they were better. But as much as they say "if your sick, don't come to work" it really means "unless your on your death bed you better be here!"
bellaressa bellaressa 9 years
I always say will do. I actually mean it. I usually have questions once I ponder information and usually ask if I can contact people after the initial meeting. Sometimes I just need time to process. Slow right.
SDTransplant SDTransplant 9 years
When my bosses ask me to do something, I usually respond with "No problem" and I genuinely mean it. There was one day that was particularly harrowing though which involved my being on the phone with the "big boss" and he was not happy that my bosses were not around at the time. When they got back, they thanked me for being helpful, and I said, "No problem" as usual, but they caught the fatigue in my voice and called me on it! It was funny and we all laughed about it, and I was honest and told them I usually mean it, but it had been a rough afternoon. I'm glad they were understanding about it.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 9 years
I always try not to pull the "I'd be happy too" one when I am busy. But then, when I dont' act sooo fricken ahpyp for getting MORE work, they talk to me about my attitude hahahahahaha! Good thing I am LEAVING soon!
Oreo Chocolate Taster Job Listing
Things Your Boss Notices
How to Move Beyond an Administrative Assistant Role
How to Make the Workday Go Faster
From Our Partners
Latest Career & Finance
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds