The Truth about Lies in the Workplace (Enhanced)

How to Spot Liars and What to Do about Them

Carol Kinsey Goman (Author)

Publication date: 06/24/2013

The Truth about Lies in the Workplace (Enhanced)

The Enhanced Edition includes 22 minutes of instructional video by the author in seven videos. The introduction video uses a card trick to show why some liars are harder to spot than others. Three videos explain the key points to know to avoid seeming deceptive when telling the truth, how biases and assumptions interfere with the ability to know who’s lying, and how managers can reduce lies in the workplace. Two videos show examples of nonverbal deception detection, and how to deal with liars in a job interview. One video shares what the author has learned since writing the book.

  • The first book to address the complexities of lies in the workplace, where deception can destroy relationships, careers, and companies
  • Offers dozens of ways to spot liars and tactical advice on how to deal with them
  • Written by a leading workplace consultant and body language expert
  • Click here for the press release

Lies aren't good in general, but in the workplace they're especially poisonous. They can destroy employee engagement and productivity, undermine teamwork, increase stress, ruin people's livelihoods, and even bring down entire companies.

It's critical to catch workplace lies before they snowball into something catastrophic, but most of us have no clue about how to spot a liar. And the workplace setting adds another layer of complexity. At what point do you report a liar? If you decide to take action, what exactly should you do? And what if the liar is your boss?

In this entertaining and needed book, leading workplace body language expert Carol Kinsey Goman combines her own experiences with the latest research to provide a comprehensive guide to spotting, exposing, and minimizing workplace lies. Goman looks at the high cost of workplace deception for individuals and organizations, why people tell lies at work, and the kinds of lies they tell. She offers fifty ways that body language and vocal cues can help you spot a liar and explains how our own vanities, desires, self-deceptions, and rationalizations allow us to be duped.

Once you spot a lie, she provides tactical advice on how to respond, whether the liar is above, below, or on the same level as you. And Goman explains how to make sure your own body language doesn't inadvertently make you seem untrustworthy and what leaders at all levels can do to reduce lies and encourage candor.

Some workplace lies are a polite and positive part of professional life ("I'd be delighted to come to that meeting"). But Goman focuses on truly destructive lies and shows how you can prevent them from wreaking havoc on individuals and organizations.

Read more and meet author below

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Overview

The Enhanced Edition includes 22 minutes of instructional video by the author in seven videos. The introduction video uses a card trick to show why some liars are harder to spot than others. Three videos explain the key points to know to avoid seeming deceptive when telling the truth, how biases and assumptions interfere with the ability to know who’s lying, and how managers can reduce lies in the workplace. Two videos show examples of nonverbal deception detection, and how to deal with liars in a job interview. One video shares what the author has learned since writing the book.

  • The first book to address the complexities of lies in the workplace, where deception can destroy relationships, careers, and companies
  • Offers dozens of ways to spot liars and tactical advice on how to deal with them
  • Written by a leading workplace consultant and body language expert
  • Click here for the press release

Lies aren't good in general, but in the workplace they're especially poisonous. They can destroy employee engagement and productivity, undermine teamwork, increase stress, ruin people's livelihoods, and even bring down entire companies.

It's critical to catch workplace lies before they snowball into something catastrophic, but most of us have no clue about how to spot a liar. And the workplace setting adds another layer of complexity. At what point do you report a liar? If you decide to take action, what exactly should you do? And what if the liar is your boss?

In this entertaining and needed book, leading workplace body language expert Carol Kinsey Goman combines her own experiences with the latest research to provide a comprehensive guide to spotting, exposing, and minimizing workplace lies. Goman looks at the high cost of workplace deception for individuals and organizations, why people tell lies at work, and the kinds of lies they tell. She offers fifty ways that body language and vocal cues can help you spot a liar and explains how our own vanities, desires, self-deceptions, and rationalizations allow us to be duped.

Once you spot a lie, she provides tactical advice on how to respond, whether the liar is above, below, or on the same level as you. And Goman explains how to make sure your own body language doesn't inadvertently make you seem untrustworthy and what leaders at all levels can do to reduce lies and encourage candor.

Some workplace lies are a polite and positive part of professional life ("I'd be delighted to come to that meeting"). But Goman focuses on truly destructive lies and shows how you can prevent them from wreaking havoc on individuals and organizations.

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Meet the Author


Visit Author Page - Carol Kinsey Goman

Carol Kinsey Goman, PhD, is an international keynote speaker, specializing in the link between leadership and nonverbal communication. She coaches executives, women leaders, salespeople, and managers to build strong and productive business relationships by projecting confidence, credibility, caring, and charisma. A frequent presenter for The Conference Board, The Executive Forum, and the International Association of Business Communicators, Carol presents keynote addresses and seminars on leadership, collaboration, body language in the workplace, and change communication to corporations, government agencies, and major trade associations.

Her clients include more than 200 organizations in 25 countries— corporate giants such as Consolidated Edison, 3M, and PepsiCo; major nonprofit organizations such as the American Institute of Banking, the Healthcare Forum, and the American Society of Training and Development; high-tech firms such as Hewlett-Packard and Texas Instruments; agencies such as the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, US Army Tank- Automotive and Armaments Command, and the Library of Congress; and international firms such as Petróleos de Venezuela, Dairy Farm in Hong Kong, SCA Hygiene in Germany, and Wärtsilä Diesel in Finland.

Carol has been cited as an authority in such media as Industry Week, Investor’s Business Daily, CNN’s Business Unusual, American Public Media’s Marketplace, MarketWatch Radio, and NBC Nightly News. She is a leadership blogger for Forbes.com and has published more than 300 articles in the fields of organizational change, leadership, innovation, communication, the multigenerational workforce, collaboration, employee engagement, and body language in the workplace. She’s the author of 12 business books, including The Nonverbal Advantage: Secrets and Science of Body Language at Work and The Silent Language of Leaders: How Body Language Can Help— or Hurt— How You Lead.

Carol has served as adjunct faculty at John F. Kennedy University in the international MBA program, at the University of California in the Executive Education Department, and for the Chamber of Commerce of the United States at its Institutes for Organization Management. She’s a faculty member for the Institute of Management Studies, presenting training seminars internationally. To contact Carol about speaking engagements, consulting, or leadership coaching or to register for her newsletter, please e-mail [email protected]; call (510) 526-1727; or visit her online at www.carolkinseygoman.com.

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Table of Contents

Introduction

CHAPTER 1 Liars at Work

Development of a Liar

Workplace Lies at All Levels of the Organization

Consequences of Lying

CHAPTER 2 Deception Detection: 50 Ways to Spot a Liar

It's Not Lie Detection-It's Stress Detection

The Best Lie Detectors

What Body Language Won't Tell You

Detecting Deception through Nonverbal Cues

Detecting Deception through Verbal Cues

Virtual Liars

CHAPTER 3 Why We Believe Liars and Play into Their Hands

Lasting Impact of Snap Judgments

We're All Biased

Techniques of Successful Liars

How We Deceive Ourselves

CHAPTER 4 How to Deal With Liars

Dealing With Liars in Your Workplace

Strategies for Direct Confrontation

Strategies for Indirect Confrontation

Strategies for Reporting Liars

When the Liar Is Your Boss

When the Liar Reports to You

Getting a Confession

If You Choose to Do Nothing

One More Liar to Deal With

CHAPTER 5 Do You Look Like a Liar?

Why Others Get the Wrong Impression

Projecting Confidence, Competence, and Credibility

Aren't These Tips a Bit Deceitful?

CHAPTER 6 Reducing Lies in the Workplace

Responses from Survey Participants

Research on What Reduces Lying

Increasing Workplace Honesty Begins with 10 Questions

Summing Up

Notes

Acknowledgments

Index

About the Author

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Excerpt

The Truth about Lies in the Workplace

Introduction

FOR THE PAST TWO YEARS I HAVE BEEN A CONTRIBUTOR TO Forbes.com. I write articles about body language—its impact on a leader’s effectiveness in managing change, engaging employees, leading collaboration, negotiating, and communicating with a multicultural workforce. My more popular entries usually receive 10,000 to 20,000 hits.

On April 11, 2012, I posted the blog “12 Ways to Spot a Liar at Work.” Within 10 days the post had been viewed 262,929 times. Clearly, the number of hits showed that this topic struck a chord with my business and leadership audiences.

It also reflected my growing interest in the subject. I had been trained as a therapist and knew how to track, mirror, and analyze nonverbal cues. In my private practice and later as a leadership coach, I became adept at spotting contradiction—noting those places where a client’s words and body language were out of sync. I became a fan of Paul Ekman, the foremost authority in emotions research, nonverbal communication, and the role of microexpressions in lie detection; and most recently Patryk Wezowski, founder of the Center for Body Language in Antwerp, and his program for detecting microexpressions in workplace settings. I followed a variety of other researchers as they reported on the lying behaviors of children, profiled the (sometimes surprising) qualities of convincing liars, and used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) machines to track what happens in a person’s brain when telling a lie. In addition, my 25 years as a lecturer in more than 100 companies in 24 countries provided me with real-world knowledge about the impact of deception in the workplace.

I assumed that, given what I already knew, writing a book on this topic would be easy.

I was wrong.

The deeper I delved into the most recent studies on deception from neuroscientists, social psychologists, and university researchers, the more I discovered how little I really knew. I began by thinking that lying in the workplace was an aberration that could be eliminated; instead I found that lying was created by evolution and driven by social necessity—and that we couldn’t operate in a business environment (or any other environment) without some forms of it. I thought that I could divide the workplace into categories—the deceitful “them” and the truthful “us”—but found that there is no such clear-cut distinction. I believed that I was honest with myself, only to discover that no one is. I felt I was a perceptive and objective observer, but I discovered that like everyone else I hold unconscious biases that are pervasive and powerful enough to distort reality.

When I sent out a “deception in the workplace” questionnaire, I received 547 responses that added to my growing knowledge—this time from firsthand accounts—about the negative effects that destructive lies have on individuals, teams, and organizations. I learned that many people work (happily and productively) in organizations with ethical leadership and trustworthy co-workers. But I also learned that a majority does not: 67 percent of respondents said that they have lost confidence in the truthfulness of their senior leaders, 53 percent admitted that they don’t trust their managers, and 51 percent believed that their co-workers regularly lied.

The Truth about Lies in the Workplace describes what I have discovered so far about this nuanced and fascinating topic. The following is a brief overview.

Chapter 1, “Liars at Work,” lays a framework for the book by giving an overview of the (positive and negative) nature, pervasiveness, and consequences of lies at work. Chapter 2, “Deception Detection: 50 Ways to Spot a Liar,” teaches you the signs of increased stress and anxiety that most often accompany deception and explains the verbal and nonverbal cues that are most likely to indicate a falsehood. Chapter 3, “Why We Believe Liars and Play into Their Hands,” explains how our vanities, assumptions, prejudices, rationalizations, and self-deceptions set us up to be duped. Chapter 4, “How to Deal With Liars,” gives practical advice and options for responding when someone lies to or about you. Chapter 5, “Do You Look Like a Liar?,” offers body language tips to help you project your true competence and confidence—and to ensure that feeling anxious, introverted, or shy doesn’t inadvertently signal untrustworthiness. Chapter 6, “Reducing Lies in the Workplace,” includes examples of how leaders at all levels of the organization are reducing destructive lies and encouraging candor.

I think you’ll find this book a real eye-opener. I did, researching it. I’d love to hear about your experience with lies and deception (or with honesty and trust) in your workplace. Please contact me at [email protected] with comments and questions.

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Endorsements

The Truth About Lies in the Workplace is more than about spotting liars at work. It's about recognizing our own roles in fostering workplace deception, understanding how our own biases affect the way we interpret & relate to lies of others, and finding ways to minimize the destructive impact of lies & hidden bias. Carol Kinsey Goman brings these concepts together in ways easy to understand. Our challenge is to use this understanding to do the hard work required to create open, honest & productive workplaces.

--Marci Rubin, Executive Director, California Minority Counsel Program

"Carol Kinsey Goman exposes the mechanics of deception in this powerful new handbook for workplace health and productivity. Add a live keynote or seminar with Carol, and a new era of leadership and exemplary workplace culture is within your grasp."

--Karen Tucker, CEO, Churchill Club

"What a fabulous topic for today's leaders. As we move toward heterarchical organizational design, there's never been a more important time to deal with deception in the workplace."

-- Watts Wacker, Futurist & Bestselling Author of "The 500 Year Delta"

"We live in a world of confusion and deception. The Truth About Lies in the Workplace will make us all successful detectives and fact checkers in our work lives. This book gave me insights into finding the truth and safeguarding my reputation."

--Lee Hornick, President, Business Communications Worldwide and Program Director, The Conference Board

"In today's hyper-connected world, transparency and trust in the workplace is critical. Carol Kinsey Goman clearly understands the power of honest, collaborative leadership. And that's no lie."

--Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin Koval, Chairman and CEO, respectively, of Publicis Kaplan Thaler

"Goman's book sheds light on a phenomenon in business that too many of us prefer to act as if it doesn't exist: deception. Not only does she use her expertise in non-verbal communication to help identify when lies occur, but she goes further to provide clear actionable steps we can take to address it. As she pulls back each layer of this onion the reader begins to see the power of establishing greater trust in our organizations (and the cost of not doing so). She doesn't just give platitudes for why this should occur, but direct steps we can take to help cause it. The Truth About Lies in the Workplace is a must-read for emerging and established leaders alike."

--JD Schramm, Ed.D., Director, Mastery in Communication Initiative, Stanford University Graduate School of Business

"Lying in the workplace causes huge problems for business -- proper people do not get promoted; profits are generally compromised; wrong steps are made; and muchmore. This book should be a best seller."

--Robert L. Dilenschneider, President and Chief Executive Officer, The Dilenschneider Group, and Best-selling author of Power and Influence: A Briefing for Leaders

"Carol Kinsey Goman offers a thoughtful, often counter-intuitive, and actionable analysis of lying in the workplace and in life. She is an exceptionally good business writer. Her work is practical and useful. I highly recommend Goman's The Truth About Lies in the Workplace to any business women or men who manage people."

--Timothy Askew, CEO, Corporate Rain International

"In this ground-breaking work, Carol Kinsey Goman, Ph.D., boldly enters a topic that has been taboo for far too long, and reveals the tools and tactics necessary to spot the liar in our midst. We attempt to hire warriors, only to realize too late, we have hired a cunning liar. Now there is no excuse! The Truth About Lies in The Workplace is a game changer, and a long overdue weapon in the toolkit of every HR professional."

--Brad Szollose, Award-winning author of Liquid Leadership: From Woodstock to Wikipedia

After 30 years in the training and development industry, I have come to trust Goman's expertise in body language and nonverbal cues in the workplace. This book provides practical solutions to help organizations develop strategies to deal with liars at work - keeping in mind that some liars should not be "dealt with" at all. I would recommend this book to any leader working to improve culture and effective communication within his/her organization.

--Margie Mauldin, President, Executive Forum

"People lie for different reasons. It can be driven by fear, greed, or even an organizational culture that encourages it. No matter what the reason, lying destroys employee morale and ultimately the bottom-line. The Truth About Lies in the Workplace gives you the tools to cut through to the truth and helps you determine what to do when you spot lies."

--Jon Peters, President, The Institute for Management Studies and CEO, AthenaOnline

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