Learn to identify Dishonest Candidates

Dishonesty can seriously harm an organization. Screen your candidates




The willingness to tell others something that is not true especially if the person feels threatened by telling the truth. Fear of the consequences of telling the truth. Willingness to say whatever to keep out of trouble or achieving immediate, personal gain. Because honesty is one of the five general categories of integrity and attitude, stealing is likely to come under that category.

What the Trait is NOT

An indication the person has a criminal record or is a criminal.

Closely Related Traits

  • Critical
  • Blame

Keep an Eye Out For

Employees who score an average of 35 or above on Critical, Blame, and Dishonest traits tend to get upset with their supervisors and management, will not accept constructive criticism, and maybe very defensive. Additionally, they may tend to get into long drawn out disagreements, hold grudges, and can be more difficult to get along with.

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Poor Range

Borderline Score

Over 25 on Dishonesty is a strong sign the candidates will falsify or exaggerate their strengths and weaknesses—and what they will tell you in an interview or on a resume.

Interview Questions

How important is it to support your boss? (Hopefully they will say it is.)
This is a hypothetical situation: Let’s say your boss asks you to tell a customer the product will be delivered in two weeks. You know it’ll be four weeks, and the boss knows it’ll be four weeks. What would you do?

(If he says he would lie, you know you have a person who’ll lie, especially to support the boss. If he says he would never lie under any circumstance, you may have an honest person. Ignore all the sales talk they may give, such as, “I would feel uncomfortable lying and don’t believe lying is right,” and repeat the question, “But what would you do?”(Emphasis on the do). A “that is a difficult question to answer” shows that the persons is open to lying under some circumstances.

Tip: Honesty can only be determined if you put applicants between a rock and a hard place and see which route they take. In the first two situations they don’t know if you’re looking for support or empathy so they may try to avoid the question. Make sure you find out what they would do.

Dishonesty Threshold

Everyone will be dishonest to another if telling the truth will cause enough perceived loss. For example, a technician may tell his boss the job is much further along than it is to keep out of trouble for goofing off. The perceived trouble will motivate the lie. Some people have a higher threshold of being honest than others. In other words, some people are more willing to face the consequences of being truthful than others. The more willing to face the consequences the lower (better) this trait will be. The more effort to avoid the consequences the higher (worse) the trait will be. Or people who score high on dishonestly believe it is perfectly alright to lie to others or steal from others including those who are interviewing them.

Supervisor Strengths