Getting ahead in corporate America or with just about any employer is likely more challenging than it ever has been. With a growing number of companies consistently moving to a model of more with less while chasing the cheapest price to compete on a global level, employers appear to be comfortable telling many of the same lies they have been for decades. The only difference now is a growing number of people are beginning to get wise to the deceit.
Even with the recent “Great Resignation” and the difficult time many employers are having in finding quality help, many of them are still not being truthful with their current and future employees. Yet, they wonder why no one either wants to work for them or they have staff that doesn’t stay for very long.
Here is a list of some of the most blatant lies employers and corporate America are still telling their current and soon-to-be-former employees.
We have a good work-life balance at our company.
The work-life balance term is one employer’s like to use routinely. The reason for this is they know most of the people they hire likely came from a place with no balance whatsoever let alone a balance between work and life.
When an employer tells potential hires of their great balance in the workplace and time off don’t believe it for a minute. It is possible a few scarce companies might have a good balance between time off and time spent on the job. However, the business model of today’s corporate America does not promote a healthy work-life balance for the everyday employee.
Most employers know their financial bottom line includes squeezing the life out of the people that work for them. The 40-hour workweek for most of America’s workers is a fabrication born from decades ago when employers and people had respect for each other. Today, this is no longer the case. Most of a company’s workers are expendable to them and they add to the financial bottom line.
The global business model of today with massive outsourcing, cheap inferior products at a low cost, and trying to do more with less simply does not allow a healthy work-life balance in most instances.
There are great advancement opportunities here.
Companies will routinely tell the people that currently work for them and the ones they hire about their great advancement opportunities. The problem with this is it simply is not true for everyone even though they tell this lie to each person.
Sometimes employers will hire people with no intention of advancing that person but they will tell them moving up is certainly a possibility. The reason for this is no one wants to typically work at a place where they do not have an opportunity to advance in pay and position. If employers did not tell the great opportunity lie, they would have a difficult time hiring people.
Businesses will also always do what is in their best interest. If they have an employee that does a great job in their current job position, this person might not ever see a better opportunity even if they are qualified because the employer has a hard time filling the role.
We are family at this company and our employees are the greatest asset.
Unless you are a truly related family member to the business owner or someone that runs a company you work for, you are not family. This statement that many companies so often give is completely dishonest.
The only assets most companies value and particularly the ones owned by shareholders is their profit. The only true asset is how much money the business makes. Employees at a company come at a cost. They are an overhead expense and not an asset.
True family members often have a hard time laying off or firing people that are related to them. Almost all businesses are quick to get rid of people when they are experiencing difficult financial times. The employees at companies are not family and the people that run these businesses do not see most of the people that work for them as a true asset.
If you work hard, you will get promoted and advance.
If there is one true enormous lie in the business world, it is the perception that hard work will always pay off. Anyone that is in the working world is guilty of saying how hard work always pays for itself. Business leaders and corporate America are not short of being guilty with the impression of hard work always results in success.
Yes, hard work and persistence can and do pay off. But this is not always the case. Sometimes working hard is just working harder than someone else. Putting in more hours at the office or doing more than the slacker you work with will not always result in being promoted.
The idea of hard work is something employers use to get people to do more by putting the idea in their heads that it will lead to advancement. Believing that hard work always pays off is also something many people like to state to others when they become successful. It gives them a sense of being better than others by believing they must have done more to achieve their accomplishments compared to those that fail to succeed.
There are plenty of people that probably do work hard and enjoy success. However, there are also likely just as many that hardly work and reach their goals. Furthermore, there are likely even more people that work very hard only to fall short of their ultimate goals.
We are not sexist or racist at this company.
It is still surprising how many companies get away with what they do when it comes to discrimination in 2022. Most corporations claiming to not be sexist or racist do so because they need to try and validate their behavior. Look at the top management in companies that constantly talk about how they do not discriminate and regularly it’s easy to see that they do based on the people that hold top positions.
The true unspoken lie companies almost always talk about not being sexist is laughable in the world we live in today. A good example of this can be seen with a lot of companies that use sex to sell. Look at top companies in pharmaceutical sales or the financial industry and you will see attractive people both male and female. Companies use sex to sell and they do discriminate based on race, age, and even attractiveness.
When a company makes the claim of not being sexist or racist it is a complete lie.
We can’t afford to pay you more or give you time off.
Something almost everyone hears in their adult working life is a company claiming they can’t do something financially or in the benefits department. It happens all the time with potential new hires and current employees. For example, businesses and their Human Resource Departments claim they are not able to pay a person more because it’s not in their budget or doesn’t fall within the salary range of a position.
There is no set law that says what a corporation can and can’t pay. These are the rules they set up themselves and they do break them. Yet, they only break them when they want to and for the people they would like to do it for.
The word “can’t” is just a term used by employers to put a stop to a conversation. The truth is there are always exceptions to rules at almost all companies and there always will be. The only difference is they will only break those rules when they want to and need to do so.
My brother, nephew, or sister was best qualified for the open position.
Nepotism has existed forever and do not expect the practice to disappear anytime soon. If an employer hires a relative instead of advancing another employee for a higher position, that person might be more qualified for the job. Yet, this isn’t always the case.
Nepotism is always going to take precedence over someone that is not related.
We don’t play favorites.
Although some companies and their leaders might claim they do not favor certain people, this is never the case. Politics and favoritism always play a role in addition to nepotism.
All companies will promote people and fire the ones they ultimately don’t like either for personal or financial reasons. If an employer tells a worker their decision is not a personal one, this is a complete lie.
People in high positions at companies will always hire their friends particularly if it will help them in the future. At the higher managerial levels at most big corporations politics start to become even more important than performance. This can’t be more evident than when failed CEOs are able to easily bounce from one company to another.
There should be no shame in stating the truth in the corporate world which is it isn’t often what you know but combining it with who you know. This is what advances careers. Favorites do play a role.
Your participation is entirely voluntary.
If you are ever asked to attend a work function on a supposedly voluntary basis, this often silently means you are expected to appear. The volunteer participation statement really is just a way to get people to do something without compensation.
Businesses don’t want to pay people for gatherings or functions outside of the office but they do want their employees to show up. Not attending something also will often send a signal to the employer that the person not present isn’t a team player. The entirely voluntary lie is just part of getting involved in the political workplace games.
Don’t believe for even a second if an employer tells you there are no politics at the office. This is almost always next to impossible.
Our core values are helping our customers and making this a great place to work.
If a company says its main values are rooted in anything other than making money and profits, they are completely untruthful. This is especially the case for public companies that answer to shareholders.
All businesses are open to make money. This even includes the so-called non-profit ones. They all need to make money to operate in one form or another. The for-profit companies go even further and many times need to keep showing increasing revenue to reward investors and shareholders.
Customer service is an important part of many companies. Yet, if they can find a way to limit the actual service and still make a profit they will. The customers of a company are just a means to an end, which is the money itself.
These lies are not the only ones.
This list of top lies employers and corporate America keep telling are not the only ones. There is a long list of items that could likely go on forever. All of them probably do not come as a complete surprise. The only disbelief should be that companies are still using them believing people trust the lies they are still telling.
The real amazement isn’t that companies still try to pass the deceits they do but the fact they many times still believe people trust in what they are telling them.