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Where Have You Gone Sergeant Joe Friday?

Sometimes inspiration can be found in the most unlikely places

For those of you who don’t remember or aren’t familiar with the iconic television series

Dragnet, you’re in for a treat. Maybe. For those of you who know and remember

Dragnet, you’ll know immediately what we’re talking about.

The show – which ran through the 1950s and during the late 1960s, and ad infinitum in

re-reruns – set standards for the many police and crime shows (and movies) that have

been produced since then. The main character was Sergeant Joe Friday as played by

Jack Webb. He became famous and has endured through the decades for his

cardboard-like movements and direct monotone voice. (Really. Did he ever move his

arms when he walked?)

Americana is richer today for the standard lines delivered in most every episode:

• “This is the city. Los Angeles, California.”

• “The story you are about to see is true.”

• “Only the names have been changed to protect the innocent."

Then there is the recurring quotation that is our topic for today. Captured in Joe Friday’s immortal words, “Just the facts, ma’am.” Good advice that applies more than ever to today’s job search world.

Let’s get one thing straight. We’re not about to suggest that any job seekers or employers, for that matter, are flat-out lying on their resumes and job descriptions. We’ll leave that to the politicians.

But there are such things as lying by omission and/or exaggerating the truth. Over time, both job seekers and employers have been guilty. To no one’s benefit, to be sure. Abraham Lincoln, who knew a thing or two about honesty, having earned the moniker “Honest Abe” said, “No man has a good enough memory to be a successful liar.”

Being absolutely truthful in your job search can only benefit you. After all, the truth is much easier to remember than some concocted story.

As for Honest Abe, he had some other good advice for job seekers of any age, from any age:

• “Whatever you are, be a good one.”

• “The best way to predict your future is to create it.”


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