Would a good liar make a good accountant?

Do you have children? Have they ever told you a lie? Even a small teeny weeny lie?

Well, if they have then although you may not be particularly pleased with them, it may actually mean that they have good memories and excellent thinking skills.

Psychologists at the University of Sheffield tested 135 children and found that those children that lied performed much better than the honest children in the group.

The children in the study were aged between 6 and 7 years old and during the study they were given a trivia game. The answers to the trivia game were on the back of the card which they had been given. Initially, each child was in a room accompanied by one of the researchers but the researcher then left the child alone with the card with the answer on the back.

Before leaving the room the researcher told the children not to look at the answer but what the children didn’t know was that when they were alone in the room there were hidden cameras which were monitoring whether they would look at the answers on the back.

25% of the group subsequently cheated and looked at the answers on the back of their cards but claimed that they hadn’t cheated when the researcher returned to the room.

At a later stage, all of the children had to perform a separate memory test and the research found that the children who had lied performed significantly better than those children who didn’t lie.

Dr Tracy Alloway, project lead from the University of North Florida was also involved in the research and said that “this research shows that thought processes, specifically verbal working memory, are important to complex social interactions like lying because the children needed to juggle multiple pieces of information while keeping the researcher’s perspective in mind”.

This has got me thinking as a lot of the readers of this blog are accountants or studying to be accountants.

“Thought processes”, “verbal working memory”, “juggling multiple pieces of information” and “keeping other people’s perspective in mind” are all skills which many accountants need.

Does this mean that you would make a good accountant if you were a good liar when you were a child?

Whatever your answer is, I’m not sure I would believe you…

He could beat vampires but he couldn't beat the tax man...

It doesn’t matter if you’re a famous film star or not. If you don’t pay your taxes you could get into a lot of trouble.[..]

What have James Bond and accountants got in common?

James Bond – fast cars, fast women and saving the world. It’s all in a day’s work for 007. A lot of the readers of[..]

Should this former Deloitte accountant become a doctor?

One of the key attributes of finance and business people should be ethical behaviour. Note that I say “should be” as not everyone seems to[..]
Is this worth smiling for?
Are you happy when you spend money? I guess the answer depends on what you’re spending the money on but over in China, KFC have[..]
An awkward mistake.
Have you ever sent an email to the wrong person by mistake? What about posting something on social media which, with hindsight you’d wished you[..]
OMG - will these hit the shelves?
Procter & Gamble, or P&G as it’s commonly known, is one of the world’s largest companies and has an incredible portfolio of products including Gillette,[..]
Grant Thornton fined £4million.
Grant Thornton, the mid-tier accounting firm has been fined £4m and reprimanded by the Financial Reporting Council (FRC). So, what did they do wrong? It[..]
Something to crow about...
At the time of writing the Puy du Fou historical theme park in France has got over 12,000 TripAdvisor reviews and a 5 star rating.[..]