Lexicon of Intentionally Ambiguous Recommendaions
Writing letters of recommendation can be hazardoustell the truth and you might get sued if the contents are negative. Robert Thornton, a professor at Lehigh University, has a collection of “virtually litigation-proof” phrases called the Lexicon of Intentionally Ambiguous Recommendations, or LIAR.
Here are some examples:
- To describe an inept person”I enthusiastically recommend this candidate with no qualifications whatsoever.”
- To describe an ex-employee who had problems getting along with fellow workers”I an pleased to say that this candidate is a former colleague of mine.”
- To describe an unproductive candidate”I can assure you that no person would be better for the job.”
- To describe an applicant not worth consideration” I would urge you to waste no time in making this candidate an offer of employment.”