It’s said that only 3 types of people tell the truth. However, it seems that honesty in the workplace is not a nice-to-have but rather a must-have. And yet, if you tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth you can do damage to your reputation.

So if the question isn’t whether or not to tell the truth, then it must be how to tell it?

Check out: 5 Rules for Truth-Tellers 





  • partial – favoring one side in a dispute above the other; biased
  • pleasantry – an inconsequential remark made as part of a polite conversation
  • paper over – disguise (an awkward problem) instead of resolving it
  • recur – occur again, periodically, or repeatedly
  • elaborate – involving many carefully arranged parts or details; detailed and complicated in design and planning :
  • actionable – able to be done or acted on; having practical value
  • iteration – the repetition of a process


Think about it

Answer the questions below.

  • Why is Thumper’s dad’s advice bad for companies?
  • In what situations and under what circumstances are aggressive company cultures advantageous?
  • What does the author mean by saying: “[m]ake sure that the metrics don’t get in the way of a clear message?”
  • Why it it not advisable to wait before breaking bad news?
  • Do people who don’t like to deal with inconvenient facts deal with them eventually?


Practice makes perfect


Fill in the blank spaces with the words in bold

recall   –   along   –   partial

I’ve always been ______ to Thumper’s dad’s advice about communication. In case you don’t ______ it from Bambi, it runs ______ the lines of, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nothin’ at all” — at least as Thumper recalled it.


Fill in the blank spaces with the missing articles if necessary.

This is ______ pretty good advice for small talking animals, but it’s ______ really bad way to run a company. You can’t build ______ successful business based on ______ culture that values ______ quiet, courtesy and consensus over honest conversation, constructive criticism, and, where necessary, confrontation.


Fill in the blank spaces with the missing words. You can use one word in each blank space. 

______ long as people are arguing ______ the right reasons, an aggressive culture where people stand their ______ and argue their cases makes for much better decisions than ______ in which people paper over their differences with white ______ and pleasantries. ______ your point, say your piece, and sit your butt down. Don’t argue with the truth.


 Explore it more