Should I lie on my resume to get a job?

August 20th, 2015 Posted by Ask the Rabbi No Comment yet

Question:

Is it a sin to write about false experience on my resume? If I get an interview for a job then lie about the experience that I had because they always want experience and I know I can do the work if only they gave me a chance, would talking about the job experience I didn’t have be a sin because of the lie?

∼ Mimi

Answer:

Dear Mimi,

We suspect that you didn’t really write us expecting us to encourage lying. Aside from the moral implications, should you actually lie convincingly enough to get a job, you would have a constant sword dangling over your head.

However, the difficulty in getting that first opportunity is real. One of the worst ways to find a job is by submitting a resume. You are an indistinguishable piece of paper in a pile of numbers and statistics.

Depending on the type of work you want to do, getting a job is often a job in and of itself. It frequently needs to be approached in a circuitous way in the same way that reaching a mountain peak is seldom best tackled directly in a straight line. We will offer you some ideas, but you need to supply your own diligence and creativity.

  1. Get experience through volunteer work.
  2. Have someone wise help you evaluate and describe your life experiences. You may have more applicable experience than you recognize. Women in particular often downplay their strengths.
  3. Get to know a greater number and variety of people. (We have a two audio CD set on this topic: Prosperity Power: Connect for Success which helps even the shy among us.) A personal connection is invaluable in getting a foot in the door. There’s no harm in trying to develop personal relationships that can open those doors in an honest and respectful manner.
  4. Apply for a job that is on a lower level than the one you want. Establish your reputation at that job and put in unpaid overtime helping out in the position to which you aspire.
  5. Keep improving your skills.
  6. Try approaching employers you’d like to work for who have not yet advertised a job opening and make them ‘an offer they can’t refuse’.
  7. Don’t give up. In a culture where problems are neatly resolved by the end of a show or movie, many of us don’t exercise our tenacity muscle.

Make your own luck,

Rabbi Daniel and Susan Lapin

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