Lying on Your Resumé

It is career poison to lie on your resumé. Or, at least, it used to be. For a typical white collar worker in the late 20th Century, a resumé was easy to fill out. Your company had given you a job title and your work duties could be verified by your superior and peers. Letters of recommendation were singed by people who believed their word counted for something. High praise was reserved for those who deserved it.

But today many of us have stepped outside that traditional framework. We’ve worked one-off projects, done freelance work or even run our own small companies. Who is best suited to give an honest assessment of our work in these cases? Should we trust our peers, our clients, or can we take the human element out of it and focus on objective metrics alone?

“…grade inflation for the adult world.”

We know that in the age of five star reviews, it’s hard to stand out for stellar performance. Let’s call it grade inflation for the adult world. Every satisfactory Uber experience gets five stars. An average client who didn’t rock the boat gets five stars. A colleague who simply showed up on time also rakes in five stars. So how can we sort out who the real overachievers are?

Our nontraditional work structures, inflated and unreliable review systems, and our own propensity to indulge a bit regarding our value have tainted the legitimacy of our resumés. So what’s the way forward? How can others judge our backgrounds in order to make the best decisions regarding how we fit their needs?

There is no perfect solution for the entirety of the global workforce, of course. But I’d love for you to share your advice, opinions, and experiences with the subject.


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