Need Better References? Hire a Professional Liar
You can’t put a price on honesty, but lies come pretty cheap. For example, $59 a month will get you the services of one Timothy Green, whose company Paladin Deception Services offers professional fibbing for people ranging from hooky players to serial philanderers. But the real bulk of his business, Green says, comes from job seekers.
Green’s company will make up fictitious supervisors, erasing your problem boss with someone who thinks the sun rises and sets on your work, or even fabricate entire job histories out of whole cloth, to make you look more experienced than you really are.
CNNMoney correspondent Blake Ellis decided to put Paladin to the test by seeing if they could get him a couple of days off work.
“Claiming to be my mother, a Paladin employee called my boss on a Wednesday and said she had planned a surprise visit to New York and that I would be out of the office for the rest of the week,” he wrote. “While the call raised some suspicions, especially given how rude and abrupt my ‘mother’ was, my boss ultimately bought it.”
Before you start writing those checks, though, it’s probably a good idea to consider just how trustworthy a professional liar might be, once he’s in your employ. For example, the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota had never heard of Green’s company, despite the fact that it’s located in that state. When pressed, he claimed the company was registered in China, but refused to show any proof.
Regardless, lying about any aspect of your work history is just plain dumb. Even if your prospective employer doesn’t catch you — and they probably will — you’ll have to remember all your lies and keep them straight, unless you want to out yourself as a fibber.
There’s one thing to be said for the truth: it’s easier to remember.
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Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
Jen Hubley Luckwaldt writes about work-life balance, stress management, and other topics relating to what makes us happy at work. A full-time freelancer, she deals with stress by blurring the lines between life and work to the point where the two spheres are barely separate. The happiest day of her career was when scientists proved that looking at pictures of cute animals makes us more productive.