Office dynamics are tricky, and women have enough to balance between home life and career deadlines. But when an office gossip pokes her nose into the mix, the stress of sticking up for yourself and others can become overwhelming. Here are three ways to handle the office gossip:
- Give gossip a definition. When gossip starts ask yourself, what is the gossiper's motive? Could it be that she is jealous of another employee? Perhaps by trying to pass off gossip as concern for another employee, what the gossiper is really feeling is envious of someone's quick advancement or favor with the higher ups. Secondly, consider if the gossip has any basis. Check the facts before assuming there is truth to the gossip. False speculation can lead to unnecessary accusations.
- Turn the gossip frown upside down. When confronted with gossip, encourage positive conversation. Set a good example for employees or co-workers by building each other up. Focus on affirmative qualities of colleagues, and if there is someone who is falling behind, volunteer to help out instead of talking about her work ethic behind her back.
- Remedy the situation at once. Gossip left to flourish will spread like a weed. If you hear gossip within the workplace, do not be afraid to stand up for yourself or your co-workers. Perhaps the gossip stems from misunderstanding or miscommunication. By talking through the issue–calmly, and privately–you can smooth out any problems and ensure that they do not continue to grow.
Gossip in the workplace can decrease the overall productivity and plant seeds of resentment amidst employees. Where there is one tense worker, there are two, and when gossip continues, the stress of the situation can escalate. Nip gossip in the bud by keeping your workplace open, honest, and above all professional.
Source: Work Awesome. Written by: Erika Fifelski was born and raised in West Michigan, and after a brief stint on the sunrise side, she's home and loving it. Erika enjoys cooking, sewing, vacuuming, and discovering new ways to live sustainably and support local businesses. Photo: Israel Papillon