During the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, Lin Maoke, a pretty nine-year-old girl appeared on stage and sang “Ode to the Motherland” to the applause of the world.
The only problem was that she was lip-synching. The song was actually sang by seven-year-old Yang Peiyi but because she was still getting her front teeth in, officials decided that she didn’t look pretty enough.
So they had Lin pretending to sing Yang’s song. “Yang has a better voice, but Lin is a fantastic actress,” said the officials.
Once more the myth that if you look good – and act the part – then you must be really good, has been perpetuated.
On LinkedIn, many embellish their credentials and make themselves out to be more than what they are: JD came from our US office to be an intern with me. Years later she lied on her LinkedIn profile that she founded the practice I was running when she came to intern with me. Total and absolute fabrication.
GC was a chronic washout with a grandiose perception of her true worth. (Fishnet stockings, anyone?) This peacock – or should I say peahen? – in love with her own feathers joined us after our firm acquired hers. At that time I was running the firm’s think-tank. Later, in her bio, she claimed that she started the think-tank.
Just because you deploy hyperbolic overstatements in your profile doesn’t make it the truth.
A pig can wear lipstick but it’s still a pig.
You may know some tricks of a trade but that doesn’t make you the master of that trade.
Truly great leaders recognize self-induced traps and take steps to contain or regulate them by balancing narcissism with truthful behavior.