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HR's Guide to Detecting Lies and Deception


Learn tips and tactics that can help determine whether someone is lying or telling the truth in the employment context and beyond.

Human resources professionals frequently assess truthfulness in the workplace. Making accurate and timely credibility determinations is an essential skill, but how can they be certain someone is being truthful? The task can be daunting. However, there are techniques that can make the job easier; proven tips and tricks borrowed from another profession - the professional intelligence officer.
Throughout history, countries have relied on spies and espionage to seek out the truth regarding their adversaries. While there are ethical, legal, and practical considerations that prevent employers from developing their own spy networks in the workplace, there is no reason why they cannot borrow, and learn from, some of the other tools that spy handlers around the world have used to assess truthfulness. This topic does just that - outlining tips and tactics that can help determine whether someone is lying or telling the truth in the employment context and beyond. The information consists of an initial discussion to communicate the basic material and emphasize and/or illustrate key points. The initial presentation of the substantive content is followed by scenarios to apply the concepts reviewed in the first part. Through the scenarios, you will have an opportunity to apply the concepts and develop practical skills in deceit detection.



Robert W. Conti

Robert W. Conti

Littler Mendelson, P.C.

  • Shareholder at Littler Mendelson P.C.
  • Represents both private and public sector employers in all aspects of labor and employment law, including the litigation of bench and jury trials in both federal and California state courts and before various administrative agencies, such as the National Labor Relations Board, the California Division of Labor Standards and Enforcement and the California Occupational Safety and Health Administration
  • Has specific knowledge of claims arising under Title VII, The Americans with Disabilities Act, The Fair Employment and Housing Act, The California Workers' Compensation Act, and The California and Federal Family Leave Acts
  • In his traditional labor law practice, Robert assists clients with collective bargaining negotiations, representation campaigns and hearings, and alternative dispute resolution; he also has handled airline pilot arbitrations
  • On a daily basis, he also provides advice to clients on wage and hour issues, reasonable accommodation concerns, and the documentation, discipline, and discharge of employees
  • In addition to his labor and employment practice, he also defends businesses in public access cases, including physical barrier and website accessibility, brought under Title III of the ADA and the California Unruh Act
  • J.D. degree, Loyola Law School, Los Angeles; B.S. degree, University of Southern California
Matthew W. Kurlinski

Matthew W. Kurlinski

Littler Mendelson P.C.

  • Associate with Littler Mendelson P.C.
  • Represents employers in all aspects of labor and employment matters
  • Regular speaker at national and local conferences and presents on a wide range of employment-related issues including workplace investigations, advanced elicitation and interviewing skills, and tactics for assessing employee truthfulness
  • Prior to joining Littler, he spent almost ten years with the U.S. federal government working predominantly overseas in a variety of roles related to national security and transnational issues
  • Counsels clients on a broad range of employment law matters arising under state and federal law, including workplace investigations, employment terminations and disciplinary actions, discrimination and harassment complaints, unfair competition, and trade secret protection
  • Regularly appears before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Wisconsin Equal Rights Division, and state and federal courts to defend management in employment litigation and administrative charges
  • J.D. degree, Case Western Reserve University School of Law; B.A. degree, Miami University
Sofija Anderson

Sofija Anderson

Littler Mendelson P.C.

  • Shareholder at Littler Mendelson P.C.
  • Represents employers in litigation of labor and employment-related disputes in state and federal courts and before administrative agencies, as well as in the arbitral forum
  • Experienced in both single plaintiff matters and class actions, her practice includes defending claims of employment discrimination, unlawful harassment, retaliation/whistle-blowing, wrongful discharge/violation of public policy, breach of contract, interference with prospective economic/business advantage, unfair business practices, wage and hour violations, fraud, defamation, and privacy violations
  • Also has extensive experience obtaining workplace violence injunctions on behalf of employers and affected employees
  • Aside from litigation, she assists employers of all sizes with customizing and implementing state-of-the-art employment policies and procedures
  • Also offers compliance counseling and advises employers on a variety of employment and labor-related issues, ranging from employee onboarding, performance management/discipline, accommodation, contract negotiations and plant closures; she also offers training seminars on a variety of topics
  • J.D. degree, Marquette University; B.A. degree, Marquette University

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