Find Candidates Who Tell the Truth, Even if it may Negatively Impact Them



The willingness to be brave enough to tell someone the real reason for a delay even though it may be embarrassing as opposed to an untruthful but better sounding reason.

A measurement of personal bravery.

What the Trait is NOT

A measurement of theft, stealing or criminal activity but a low score may indicate it.

Closely Related Traits

  • Dishonesty
  • Managing Fear
  • Confronting People
  • Not a Nice Guy

Closely Related Tests

  • People and Logic Test
  • Sales, People, and Logic Test
  • Predictor Profile
  • Sales Predictor Profile

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Desired Scores for Various Positions

One of three methods used to determine overall Dishonesty. 79% of those I have gotten feedback from with dishonesty scores over 31 were either fired or caused trouble or considered mediocre employees. 21% considered acceptable employees. This percentage relates to more high-level employees but for entry-level, receptionists, restaurant servers, etc. the dishonesty scores need to be over 39 for the same type of problems.

Honesty on the ability tests can be as high as 120 which is being so honest as to be willing to tell more embarrassing personal detail than is necessary. Honesty can go below minus 150 for those that really believe the best way to get ahead is to say what is thought to be something others may want to hear regardless of whether it is true or not.

  • Honesty for good executives, Sales Managers, etc. is usually around the 100 level.
  • Honesty for top performers is usually a minimum of 40 but an average 80.
  • Honesty for a Customer Service person is often around the 60 level of Honesty.
  • Honesty for a good restaurant server or entry-level person can be in the 5 to 40 range or higher.
  • Honesty for a good Receptionist can be around the zero to 30 range or higher.

Examples of Low Honesty

  • One accountant tried to embezzle company funds by opening up accounts in her own name with an Honesty score of 17. They were caught just in time.
  • Another high-level Executive was fired for blatantly falsifying a report with a score of 17.
  • A salesperson fired for not being competent with a score of 30.
  • An employee was considered mediocre with an honesty score of -17.
  • A low level employee was considered Diligent and good performer with a score of 33.
  • Another low level employee needed to be closely managed due very low initiative had an honesty score of -67.
  • Another similar low level employee needed to be closely managed due very low initiative and was considered selfish had an honesty score of -33.
  • A high level employee that scored 67 on Honesty but had an overall 44 score on dishonesty was said to lie, be untruthful, and be a poor employee.

Interview Questions

Warning: This is a tough trait to interview. Don’t try it unless you are prepared to keep repeating the question, “But what would you do?”

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 will be four weeks, and the boss knows it will be four weeks. What would you do?  (If he says he would lie, you know you have a person who will 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 dont 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.)  Why would you do it that way?  (Ask more questions about what they are saying)

Here is another hypothetical situation: Let’s say the customer agrees to give you the contract if you can deliver in two weeks. What would you DO if you knew you couldn’t deliver for four weeks?  (The same as the first situation, you must find out what they would do.)  Why would you do it that way?  (Ask more questions about what they are saying)

Here is another what if situation: The boss leaves a confidential, private memo on his desk and one of his employees notices it and reads it. Who is mostly to blame?  (If the answer is both, that is a red flag in regards to honesty. Employees should not be reading private memos on the boss’s desk.)  Why do you believe that?  (Ask more questions about what they are saying)

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.

When have you seen someone stretch the truth to make a problem go away?

When have you gone against your values during a difficult situation?