Yahoo! CEO Steps Down After Resume Lie

Nick Fishman

YAHOO

We wondered in this very blog just a week ago if Yahoo! CEO, Scott Thompson could maintain his post at the company after it was discovered that he lied about his academic qualifications.  Thompson claimed to have a degree in Accounting and Computer Science from Stone Hill College.  While he did have the Accounting degree, the school didn’t even offer a Computer Science degree until after he graduated.

As if we didn’t all know the outcome of this story, the Wall Street Journal has confirmed that Thompson stepped down over the weekend.  And as we here more and more about the details, this is looking very George O’Leary-ean.  Who can forget the Notre Dame head coach who lasted about 5 days on the job until it was reported that he lied about his educational background?

Just like O’ Leary, Thompson got caught up in a lie he started much earlier in his career.  The representation that he earned that Computer Science degree might have helped him get a leg up early on.  But from there, it was his experience that carried the day.  However, once you tell the resume  lie, you can’t stop telling it when you become well-known.

It seems Thompson tried to cover up his lie by, what else, lying.  Last week, he blamed the executive recruiting firm that helped place him at PayPal for the oversight.  Whoops!  He got caught in that one too.  The firm didn’t actually place him at Yahoo!

And so ends a familiar tale.  Applicant lies to get the job.  Employer doesn’t take the steps to confirm the applicant’s resume.  Both end of looking famously stupid.

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P.S. Today it is being reported that Thompson stepped down because he is battling thyroid cancer.  Let’s hope for his sake that this is a lie as well.

Nick Fishman
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Nick Fishman

Nick Fishman is the co-founder of EmployeeScreenIQ, a leading, global employment background screening provider, and serves as the company’s executive vice president and chief marketing officer. He pioneered the creation of EmployeeScreen University, the #1 educational resource on employment background checks for human resources, security and risk management professionals. A recognized industry expert, Nick is a frequent author, presenter and contributor to the news media. Nick is also a licensed private investigator in the states of Ohio and Texas.
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