Our company is offering a new service and we are doing our best to get the word out to company leaders we have met. A disturbing issue to me is how cavalier phone receptionists are about lying in order to block calls (yes I know unscheduled calls can be annoying, as a company CEO I get them all the time).

Today one of the calls was to the head of a financial services firm and I introduced myself to the company receptionist and then asked for the president by name. She came back on the phone and apologized saying he was on the phone and asked if I wanted to leave a message in his voice mail. I said no and would just hold on. She then told me he was not there. I asked her how she knew he was on the phone and she stumbled with an answer saying she thought she saw the phone light on but was mistaken. It would appear she was not telling the truth.

Now I make calls all the time and this practice is all too common, it happens every day!

Here is the question: Why is the first person a caller speaks with being placed in a position of lying?

Looking at the example above, would anyone do business with a financial services firm that lies?

Our Ethical Business Guide shows clearly that company ethics starts at the top! An ethical culture embraces truth. If a receptionist or any other staff member will lie for you, they will lie to you and to your customers as well. Credibility in the business world is paramount and so is authenticity.

Can you handle the truth?

Jim Mullaney

READ MORE: If you like this article you will want to read “It Takes a (Remote) Village

Jim Mullaney is President and CEO of Edoc Service, Inc. a “Fast 55” virtual company based in Cincinnati, Ohio.