Office Gossip: Let the Cat Get Your Tongue
This blog is written by Jackie, our Campus Ambassador from the University of New Hampshire! She is a Communications & Studio Art Major with a Business Administration Minor.
Reading gossip magazines and celebrity tweets are great ways to curb your gossip loving appetite. However, you should only keep your hunger filled on personal time. You may be surprised to hear how much gossip occurs in professional environments, but avoid it. Keep the reason you are there in mind…to work and gain professional experience.
If you have a friend in the office be careful not to exchange emails on gossipy subjects or comment on any colleagues. Although it can be seemingly harmless such as ‘did you hear that?’ Keep in mind the fact that you are both using work computers and most likely a work email address, which is the company’s property. Do not risk your job over something unnecessary.
Keep social networking and work separate. Do not use social media to discuss any office subjects or express stress over your work place. People have been fired and had job offers taken away from them due to such things. Be smart, and keep your social networking about you and not the office.
Stay away from discussing personal topics that can fuel side conversations or start talk. Instead, focus on neutral topics such as relevant work topics instead of how your date the night before went. As you are probably one of the younger people in the office college is a popular topic people bring up and reminisce. When asked about college, try not to discuss the weekends or crazy parties but the crazy workload instead.
Most importantly, remember that gossiping is often fueled by boredom, keep yourself busy and distracted by focusing on your work. If all else fails, block out the gossip all together with headphones. Keeping only one ear bud or headphone on and the other off you can remain out of the conversation but involved enough to hear and answer if you are spoken to directly. Let the cat catch your tongue, keep your talk office relevant.