American billionaire Elon Musk said there is always one question that job interview candidates are asked to verify if they are lying or not.
As president of Tesla and SpaceX and co-founder of Neuralink and The Boring Company, the 49-year-old businessman clearly knows what he is doing when it comes to business.
In addition to having recently become the richest person in the world with a net worth of more than 136 billion pounds, it is not surprising that everyone wants to know his hiring trick.
According to the Daily Star, Musk is not interested in the school the potential employee enrolled in or even his education level, as he said during a 2014 interview with Auto Bild: “There is no need to even have a college degree at all, or even high school. “.
Instead, the father of seven is looking for “evidence of exceptional ability” when it comes to hiring new employees. “If there is a proven track record of exceptional achievement, this is likely to continue in the future,” he said.
Of course, it’s easy for anyone to lie on their resumes or accomplishments, but Musk has a question designed to spot liars.
Speaking at the World Government Summit in 2017, he admitted that he asks every candidate he meets with the same question: “Tell me about some of the toughest problems I worked on and how I solved them.”
A study published in the Journal of Applied Research in Memory and Cognition in December 2020 revealed several methods of detecting liars based on the job interviewing method that supports Musk’s technique.
One of these methods is called “Asymmetric Information Management” (AIM) and it is designed to provide the interviewee with a clear means of proving his innocence or guilt to the investigator by providing detailed information.
“Small details are the lifeblood of forensic investigations and can provide investigators with facts to verify and witnesses for interrogation,” wrote Cody Porter, one of the study’s authors from the University of Portsmouth.
Specifically, she said, the interviewers should give clear instructions to the interviewees that “if they provide longer and more detailed data about the event of interest, the investigator will be better able to discover whether they are telling the truth or lying.”
“Conversely, liars want to hide their sins. This means that they are more likely to withhold information strategically in response to the way asymmetric information is managed,” Porter said.
“Their assumption here is that providing more information will make it easier for the investigator to discover a lie, so instead, they provide less information,” she added.
The study also found that using the asymmetric information management method can increase the likelihood of detecting liars by approximately 70%.
Musk added in his Auto Bild interview that what he really wants to know is whether the candidate has actually solved the problem he claimed to have solved. Pointing out: “Of course you want to make sure if there are some important accomplishments, is he really responsible, or was someone more responsible? Usually, the person who had to face a problem really understands the details, and does not forget.”