A little background: I joined this company (large company, 10,000+ employees, USA based) less than 6 months ago, and it is a small team of 7 people. My reporting manager (the person above me in the hierarchy) is someone with less than half my experience and he was promoted to this position (he has less than a year of experience) only because the team lead, who is a VP, has close relations with him, and therefore tends to favor and side with him. When I joined, a couple of other people were much more experienced and qualified to supervise me, but it did not happen. Anyway, even though he is my supervisor according to the team hierarchy, I have never worked with him because we work on separate projects. So in a way, his role is merely for the formalities and the necessary project related approvals.

The problem: After a few weeks of joining, I noticed that he mentioned a project that I alone was working on, on his LinkedIn profile. At first, I thought since we had casually discussed something related to the project, so it would be alright if he wrote it. And then it kept getting bad from there. After that, there have been 2 more major projects (on which I worked solo), wherein he had absolutely no contribution whatsoever (not even any ideas/suggestions). On top of that, he writes things like:

Leading all efforts on ......

Single handedly developed .....

How should I deal with this? I don't exactly know how this is going to affect me, but I think taking the credit from someone is in itself unethical. I thought of speaking about this with the team lead (he is a Vice President), but I was not sure if he would side with my colleague and consider this to be a trivial issue.

Any suggestions would be welcome. Thank you.

  • 6
    So you're working in a position where your direct supervisor has less experience than you and has been claiming your work for himself? I have a suggestion - look for a new job!
    – Zibbobz
    Sep 25, 2017 at 13:14
  • The lies someone else chooses to write on their LinkedIn profile has nothing to do with you (unless you are/were involved in hiring this person). Sep 25, 2017 at 15:04

5 Answers 5


The upside is that he obviously rates your work otherwise he would not be wanting to take credit.

But in terms of your response, I'd suggest doing nothing.

Firstly, he seems to be buddies with the VP. So anything you do or say will likely not work out well for you. Even though you are 100% in the right not to like this, it would not look good for anyone if it was challenged, and even if you do get it changed it would mean life is more difficult for you in your job afterward.

Secondly, does it really matter? Linkedin will only be important when looking for jobs. This guy seems to be way over promoted due to nepotism, it is unlikely he will move. It could possibly matter if both of you were applying for the same job and somebody queried but that does not seem likely. So you don't actually gain anything by trying to change it.

My advice would be to ignore colleagues Linkedin profiles, you don't need to see them and gain nothing from doing so.

  • 55
    And once he goes to interviews and gets asked questions about technical details or domain knowledge on these projects he allegedly did, he'll get in trouble because you cannot pull off in-depth knowledge about a topic you've not worked on convincingly. He's digging his own hole. Don't take away his shovel, he seems to deserve it.
    – simbabque
    Sep 25, 2017 at 11:20
  • 10
    "My advice would be to ignore colleagues Linkedin profiles, you don't need to see them and gain nothing from doing so." Brilliant
    – Neo
    Sep 25, 2017 at 11:23
  • 15
    If this increases the chance of him being hired somewhere else, that's to your benefit.
    – ColBeseder
    Sep 25, 2017 at 12:10
  • If this is the route to go, I would add a warning of not adding the projects to his own linked in profile. It seems that this guy values linked in stuff and will likely read the OPs linkedin profile and that looks like a potential conflict situation.
    – PlasmaHH
    Sep 25, 2017 at 15:19
  • @PlasmaHH the OP will have no risk of adding his own projects to his LinkedIn Profile. Nobody's going to waste time trying to cross-reference all your linked in accomplishments to check for duplicates. If it gets mentioned, just say "Hmm, that's interesting, I wasn't aware that he worked on my project, I can check with him." and just brush it off, because the other person lied, the OP didn't.
    – Nelson
    Sep 26, 2017 at 2:28

While it's certainly unethical and unprofessional of him to be doing this there probably isn't a lot you can do to stop him.

Assuming this is a personal LinkedIn site as opposed to one paid for by the company then it's kind of up to him what he writes on there. He's technically violating the LinkedIn Terms of Service by posting inaccurate information but I highly doubt that LinkedIn are going to get involved in any sort of he-said/she-said situation like this.

He's not really crossing into the sort of territory where he is defaming the company and unless there is something in his employment contract preventing him from posting this sort of information there isn't going to be much they can do to stop him either, while they might not like it from an honesty and integrity point of view they may well view any complaint about it as being petty and reflecting poorly on you. I'm not saying I would agree with them or that its' fair but neither is life in general.

Realistically if he's using these false claims of accomplishments to try and make himself look better it's not going to end well for him. Like lying on a CV he is professing skills and experience he doesn't have and that will sort of fall apart on him if an employer (either his current one or any in the future) expect him to be able to perform based on them and he can't. I'd just take what heart you can from that and let it go.


They are already lying on their public profile. That is entirely their problem and might come back to bite them. That said, you cannot now take full credit for the same work on the same site, because that might lead to conflict within your existing team. What you can do is take credit for the work in your CV. The problem with that is that now LinkedIn is no longer your complete profile, and you don't want recruiters to base their judgment on incomplete information. In this situation I would remove any project details (or possibly your whole profile) from LinkedIn and simply refer to your CV which is available on request.

In my experience LinkedIn is a useless time sink, and recruiters don't use anything other than the keywords in your profile to check if you're a good fit. You're better off actively looking for a good job than waiting for it to come to you.


While you can't (and shouldn't) do much to stop this - after all, the burden of prove would be upon you, as well as the problem to deal with an angry manager afterwards - it is advisable to be very careful concerning this guy.

After all, if he is ready to blatantly lie on an online profile, he may also be able to blatantly lie about his (and thus, your) achievements in the company. For me, this would be a severe warning signal, and I would recommend to try changing the team, maybe even the job. Expect such sort of people to take advantage of you whenever they are able to. And him being friends with the VP, you will always be in an inferior position should any sort of conflict arise.


It's not your business.

There's a tons of reason of why you shouldn't take care of others people way-to-work. It's rarely good to get involved into business (that aren't yours) in a negative way.

Also, he lie on her resume and will pay it later. Or not. But he have more risk to pay it then to not.