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Put ‘Trust, But Verify’ to Work in Employment Relationships

Employers should ensure all job applicants are fully (and lawfully) vetted and job applicants should ensure their resumes are accurate. Recent events in college basketball underscore the importance of the “trust, but verify” course. Steve Masiello was an assistant coach at the University of Louisville under head coach and mentor Rick Pitino until he was hired as the head coach at Manhattan College on April 11, 2011. In just three seasons, the 36-year-old Masiello established himself as a rising star in the college coaching ranks. After his team was narrowly defeated by Pitino’s defending national champion Louisville Cardinals in the first (full) round of the 2014 NCAA college basketball tournament, Pitino touted his protégé to be the next head coach for the University of South Florida men’s basketball team. Masiello and USF agreed in principle to a multi-year contract reportedly worth $5 million. Like so many employment offers, though, the agreement was contingent on USF’s verification of Masiello’s credentials. Now, amid a discrepancy discovered during a routine background check, not only has USF decided not to hire Masiello, but it appears his current job may be in jeopardy.

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