White Lies, Fibs and Whoppers

Today’s WSJ column by Elizabeth Bernstein hit the nail on the head when it comes to the difference between women’s “white lies” and the ones men tell. Seems men are relative amateurs at the art of not-quite-full-disclosure while women, not only do it often but effortlessly.

My favorite part of Bernstein’s observations is that while men were reluctant to be open with her about their Half Truth telling, women regaled her with all their war stories. Also men’s reasons for fibs were largely to avoid an argument or a confrontation. While women will clam up to keep the calm, too, they’ve got the added motivations of soothing feelings, retaining control and just “it’s none of your business.”

But of course, when the reason you want the truth IS your business (as in marketing research that is meant to unlock a brand problem), her Half Truth telling is no laughing matter.

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