Many times I have sat with a client to help with their interviews. At the end of the process I say “What do you think?”

It often surprises me that things that are either blatant lies, or even hugely exaggerated claims are believed word for word. The naivety of a sometimes experienced businessman is often a concern. “Well he said he did it, and I guess I have to believe him”.

It may come as a shock to you, but some of the best candidates on the surface are trying very hard to impress. And in doing so some will exaggerate the truth, others embellish their history, some or will just plain lie through their teeth.

As an interviewer, you have to ask not what they are saying, but why they are saying it. Be sceptical, ask for proof and can they back it up. Say that you would like to check out their story. See if they have any figures with them, or can quote you figures that back up their claims.

Dig a little deeper, make sure their figures tally with what you would expect, always question if they are different. It’s not exactly Hercule Poirot, but it is an investigation of sorts and you have to expect to be lied to.

A healthy scepticism never did an interviewer much harm.

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