You are asked to give a recommendation for, let’s say, “Barney”. Barney is not someone you would recommend. What should you do?
Depending on the expert, we hear that we should either email or call Barney to tell him we cannot give him a good reference (which I find very difficult), or we should refrain from recommending anyone at all, ever. Still others think you should just tell the truth.
So what’s a person to do? I do my best to tell the person inquiring what I know about the person in question that’s good while leaving out the bad. But if I know Barney to be an egregiously bad actor who may hurt the inquiring person, I must tell the whole truth.
What would you do?