nuns.jpgI get tons of letters from readers of my MSNBC.com column asking me for career advice. Depending on what they ask about — a bad boss, the lack of advancement, etc. — I try to help them either based on research I’ve done over my 20-plus years covering labor and workplace issues, or I enlist the help of an array of experts.

But this morning I have a simple piece of advice for all of you out there: DO NOT GO ON FOX TV’S NEW SHOW, “MOMENT OF TRUTH”.

The show debuted last night and I have to tell you it is probably career suicide for many of the contestants that agree to go on it.

On the show contestants are hooked up to a lie detector machine and the host asks them a bunch of really personal questions. When the contestant answers, a sultry voice from off stage says either “True” or “False.” The questions get more personal and intense, and as that happens the contestant gets more and more money. (Here’s a link to a trailer if you don’t believe me. I may be risking matrimonial Hari-kiri sharing this with you because I refused to heed my husband’s insistence that I not watch the show.)

The two contestants I got to see were both asked a few work-related questions, and on national television had to answer them.

One guy is a personal trainer and he was asked if he ever touched a female client more than he should have during a session. It took a while for him to answer, especially since his wife was there. He finally answered “no” to the question, and then the voice said, “false”.

BAM! Career suicide.

The next contestant, his name was George, actually brought his boss with him to the show. (What the heck was he thinking?)

The host asked George if he had ever gone through any employee’s personal belongings. It took him a while to answer, but he said “yes.”

The guy’s boss winced at that answer, and you could tell he started to regret his decision to join his employee on this little known show. He probably has to fire him now.

George, who is possibly the soon-to-be former marketing manager at a racetrack, was then asked if he ever wondered if he had a gambling problem.

My friends, this was one of the most painful moments I’ve ever witnessed. It’s like a career writer’s worse nightmare, to actually be there to watch a major career blunder in real time. Usually you guys call me after the fact and I try to help. But there I was watching this guy careening to job doom and I couldn’t do anything. Yelling at the TV was futile.

So, George, who works at a racetrack, answered, “yes”, yes, he has wondered if he had a gambling problem and indeed admitted in front of the world that he has had one for a long time.

People!! Is money really worth this public humiliation? If you do this you better hope you get lots of cash because you may soon be struggling to find a job.

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