Gossip is an unavoidable part of any workplace. We spend so many hours in the company of the same people that by nature, people gossip about one another and begin to spread rumours. But gossiping is one of the most unnecessary and pointless activities that a person can get involved in – especially in the workplace. And if you’re not careful, it’ll also wind up getting you into a lot more trouble than it’s worth...
The problems with gossiping...
Increases your lack of self-esteem
If you want to lack in confidence, then carry on gossiping! Gossip reduces your self-esteem because you constantly feel as if you need to be the provider of information to those around you. It’s as if you are on a constant power trip to outdo your co-workers with the latest juicy gossip, to seem as if you are one step ahead of the game.
Makes you look like a liar
Most of the time, workplace gossip is all lies, that’s why it’s called gossip! How many times have you heard a juicy piece of gossip, only to discover that none of it is true? By choosing to spread gossip, only to discover that none of what you are saying is true, you end up looking like a fool who just likes to make others look bad. So choose to steer clear of gossiping and only discuss what you know is the truth.
Gossiping is more trouble than it’s worth...
Most employers know a gossiper from a non-gossiper, so try to avoid being labelled the office gossip, right from day one. Not only are gossipers perceived as troublemakers, but they are also seen as untrustworthy by employers and therefore less likely to receive a promotion, bonus or pay rise.
So how do I avoid getting mixed up in office gossip?
#1 Don’t get involved!
If someone tries to share gossip with you, tell them that you are too busy to get involved. This way, they will realise that you are not interested in what they have to say and that you prefer to concentrate on your workload.
If someone has shared something with you, take it with a pinch of salt and choose to ignore it. Whatever you do, do not share it with anyone, as you fuelling the gossiper further.
#2 Be straight
Be upfront with that person. If someone is trying to gossip with you about a fellow employee, tell them you have no idea what they are talking about and that they should ask the individual in question directly.