Liespotting: Can you tell when someone isn’t being truthful?

Did you know that the average person is lied to anywhere from 10 to 200 times a day? Did you know that most people make the same unconscious verbal and non-verbal mistakes when they lie? If you know what you’re looking for, it’s easy to detect those slip ups and spot a liar.

I recently watched a TED Talk that piqued my interest. The subject was liespotting, and the speaker Pamela Meyer claims that you can tell if a person if being truthful or not by identifying simple verbal and non-verbal cues. In fact, the speaker wrote an entire book about this very topic and supported her claims with a wealth of research from sociologists and expert interrogators.

Here’s the fascinating TED Talk from 2011:

Liespotters are armed with knowledge on how to spot detection, and almost every skill shared in the book relates to non-verbal communication. This, of course, made me think of the value of video communications especially when it comes to high-stakes business decisions, such as acquisitions, negotiations, virtual job interviews and critical sales calls. Would you have signed that deal if you saw some unsettling non-verbal behavior that made you second-guess if the representative on the other side was being truthful? Would you have hired that applicant if their legs started shaking and their palms became sweaty when discussing their academic history? Would you have purchased that new tech solution if the CEO became evasive when discussing the results of their most recent beta test? Lies and liars are all around us every day, but if we are armed with the right knowledge to spot untruthful behaviors, we can protect ourselves from poor business decisions.

In the book, Meyer asserts that liespotting is not about that “Gotcha!” moment. It’s about seeking truthfulness and ultimately, building trust with those who matter most. There is simply no better way to build trust with colleagues, vendors, partners and customers than by communicating over video.

Only HD video communication replicates in-person, face-to-face interactions. Why risk it with a phone call or email? Over the phone, you can hear changes in tone of voice or verbal cues, but you completely miss the liar’s body language cues.  In an email, communication is even more limited. Even free video services like Skype and Google Hangouts aren’t reliable enough to trust with important business conversations. What if the picture freezes? What if the image is too blurry to miss subtle, split-second facial cues? When you are making critical business decisions, it’s absolutely imperative to look someone in the eyes and observe their body language. HD video conferencing is the only technology available that enables such rich, lifelike interactions.

Learn more about video communication solutions from Lifesize and see how face to face interactions can help you sharpen up your liespotting skills.

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