Well, that's just human nature. As the old saying goes, a pessimist is merely an optimist with experience.
I'd guess about half the managers out there will be honest with you. The other half? Well, they could spend a year in a confessional, get ten thousand Hail Marys for penance and still lie on Monday.
So here's a list of statements that you can pretty much discount:
1. "We don't need to put that in writing." Usually heard during contract negotiation, this lie will not be unveiled until employee tries to collect on said unwritten promise, upon which manager will suffer from selective memory. Moral: get everything in writing.
2. "It will be a lot better when we get in the new building." Yeah, I fell for this as a rookie when told that we'd be leaving our ramshackle station for a state-of-the-art facility.
3. "You'll be considered for the anchor job." If they were really considering you, they'd come to you, not vice versa, and not give you such a lame flicker of hope.
4. "We have big plans for you in the future." Usually heard after a reporter who has been at one place for awhile gets turned down for a promotion for the umpteenth time.
5. "You should consider this a promotion." Heard when you have actually been demoted to a lousy shift or had your job description drastically changed.
6. "I'll try to get you some more money." Right up there with, "The check's in the mail."
7. "If you don't sign right now I'm going to hire someone else." Typical hard-line approach taken with rookies who fear they will never, ever get a job. If you hear this, leave skid marks.
8. "You don't really need to read the contract, it's all standard." That means you really, reaaalllllly need to read the contract. And have a lawyer do it as well.
9. "Our company doesn't give outs." Do your homework with other employees at other stations. Chances are you'll find that statement isn't true.
10. "We only do three year contracts." See lie