As a matter of fact, a review of King-Reed’s Detection of Deception seminar…by Patrick Ogilvie

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As a matter of fact, a review of King-Reed’s Detection of Deception seminar…by Patrick Ogilvie

On Thursday May 12th King-Reed hosted a full day seminar at Four Seasons in downtown Toronto, featuring Donna Brown, a “ forensic people reader”.

The purpose of the seminar was to teach the Human Resources and Corporate Security attendees the several stages of understanding people’s behaviours and watching for deviations to those normal behaviours through changes and signals in their body language, statements, vocals and facial expressions. Donna’s goal was to empower the attendees to guide their communications during routine work functions such as; pre-employment interviews, workplace investigations and exit interviews, whenever a combination of several of deviations were observed.

Donna made it clear that before efforts to guide those communications were attempted, attendees had to understand there were many reasons and factors for peoples’ deviation or deception from the truth, and that in order to be effective, they had to be aware of many cultural differences and that the attendees must “respect the deception”.

A key question that Donna raised was “why would a person deviate from the truth”. Donna explained that deviation could be a result of many factors, several which we may empathize with, such as; escape punishment, obtain a reward, avoid an awkward social situation, protect or impress others, excitement of risk, obtain privacy, avoid intrusion or just out of jealousy. By understanding people’s reasons for deception, it enables an interviewer or investigator to better lead communications down the path of discovery.

Like any good recipe, the inclusion of all the ingredients can result in a delicious feast. We’ve all likely forgotten to add a crucial ingredient, and we know how that turns out. The ingredients to being a successful people reader, starts with understating a person’s normal behaviour. And, of course, having only one or two of many required ingredients doesn’t make a recipe at all. We can understand their behaviour by getting to know the person under normal conditions and by building rapport, the person can be put at ease and be themselves.

When the interview or investigation begins, we can take the baseline normal behaviours that were displayed and see how their body language, statements, vocals and facial expressions react to questions such as, why did you leave your last employer, what were you doing when the harassment occurred or why are you resigning?

Reactions and changes in that normal behaviour are the signals to continue communications and understand the changes, always remembering the reasons why someone could be deviating from the truth.

Ultimately, it’s knowing when to pursue an issue that in the end could have a negative reflection on your organization and when to take the conversation in another direction.

King-Reed & Associates LP, a Global Investigations and Risk Mitigation firm offers the following corporate services: WSIB Investigations and Surveillance, Pre-Employment Background Checks, Bill 168 Assessments and Reassessment, Workplace Violence & Harassment Investigations, Workplace Theft & Fraud Investigations, High Risk Terminations and Layoff Protection, Executive Protection & Destination Briefs, Training and Education Programs Security Audits and Assessments, Undercover Investigations, Labour Law Complaints and Audits, All forms of Civil Law Claims, Pre-trial Investigation and Interviews, Vendor Audits and Background Reports and Intellectual Property (Trademark) Theft and Misuse.


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Judith Mallard, Global Talent Director, Founder at Recruiting Now Inc. / Digital Media & Technology Enthusiast / Avid fan of all things Adobe CC - Creative Consultant

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