Liars in the Workplace

Liars in the Workplace

People who lie their way to the top - and how to deal with them!

Are you sick and tired of being over looked for that promotion? Are you fed up with hearing that "Sally" from the mailroom got that position which you KNOW she is just not qualified for simply because she is mates with the boss? Do you know of someone who continuously lies their way up the corporate ladder? Well you are not alone and there is something that can be done about these "kind" of people.

Since starting our popular "RANT n RAVE" section on Femail we have received numerous comments on how many people seem to come across and/or work with conniving, sly, manipulative and untrustworthy colleagues. This is alarming considering the fact that such a large portion of our waking lives is spent at work and with our work mates.

Do you work with someone who fits this description?

If you answer yes to two or more of the following criteria, then chances are you should be watching your back!

  • They take credit for other peoples work.

  • They are quite happy to farm off work in your direction, yet constantly tell all who are willing to listen how busy they are.

  • They are unwilling to share information with team members.

  • They are not team players.

  • They are always blowing their own trumpet to the point of wanting to gag them.

  • They display a severe case of superiority.

  • They are control freaks.

  • They cannot deal with someone coming up with a better idea than theirs and you will rarely hear them compliment a co-worker.

  • They pretend to know more than they do to mask their insecurity.

  • They exhibit incredible arrogance.

  • They somehow seem to worm their way into influential circles and do things that most decent people could never lower themselves to do in order to achieve this.

  • They are usually quite loud and laugh at their own jokes.

  • They're the life of the office party yet for all the wrong reasons.

  • They can sell ice to the eskimos.

  • They believe they are indispensable.

  • They are very good at deluding themselves and often think that everyone is out to get them or copy them.

  • They are often very vindictive and jealous and their facial expressions give them away.

  • They are fantastic liars and could win an Academy Award for their deceiving performances.

  • They don't get "that promotion" based on their own merits, they rely on others to succeed.

  • They are the true definition of a "Smiling assassin."

  • They think that having no tact and being selfish is amusing and they appear proud that they display these characteristics.

    Sound familiar?

    Often the biggest problem is that many of us are slightly intimidated by others who display these traits. This prevents many people from voicing their real opinions for fear of repercussions.

    By not speaking up and telling them what you really think, you are in fact allowing them to continuously get away with their antics. Standing up for what you believe in can be hard to do the first time, but truly is a necessity if you want to maintain some peace of mind at work. The same can apply to business owners who are not comfortable with confrontation. You also need to find the strength to stamp out these troublemakers.

    So - what to do?

  • Don't leave things until it's too late to take action. If you are aware that someone has been taking credit for someone else's work, for example, then make sure you inform the relevant person of the truth.

    Usually people fear that they will be viewed as a 'snitch', however truth always wins out in the end. If people discover that you DID know the truth yet failed to say anything, you could end up the sorer loser.

  • Don't be a party to the lies. Don't just "go with the flow". Find the courage to speak up.

  • Attempt to pull the "culprit" to one side and have a chat about your concerns. At least you have given them the opportunity to explain themselves first.

  • When they attempt to handball work your way, politely tell them "no." It is that simple.

  • If you are the employer, take appropriate action to curb their unacceptable conduct. Keep a watchful eye over them and let them KNOW it.

  • Challenge their views, don't just take what they say as gospel. Everyone has the right to their own opinions and we are all equals.

  • Play your cards a little closer to your chest and don't be so forthcoming with your ideas.

  • Listen to your intuition. If you are feeling awkward and unsettled, then there is probably a very good reason why.

  • If all else fails, leave a copy of this article on their desk!

    We hope you work in a wonderful workplace and if not - at least try to take comfort in knowing that you are not alone. You don't have to tolerate working in an environment such as this. Be strong and bear in mind that good old word "Karma" - what goes around definitely will come around.

    - Michelle Palmer & Annemarie Failla

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