Advertising
Advertising

How To Stop Negative Gossip In Office

How To Stop Negative Gossip In Office

Office gossip can have devastating effects on office morale and can sometimes get a person into trouble, especially if the gossip turns out to ruin someone’s reputation. Office gossip not only destroys a team’s cohesiveness, but it can also lead to poor work performance for those who gossip and those whom the gossip is directed. It is difficult to stay on task and complete work assignments on the job when gossip takes center stage. The best and most effective way to deal with gossip is to defeat it from the beginning instead of allowing things to fester.

A good leader can stop office gossip in its tracks

Anyone knows, or at least should know, that a good leader can provide a team with modeling of what is appropriate and inappropriate behavior for the office. It is important that a leader or any supervisor not engage in office gossip; once they do, it allows for the rest of the team to feel that they too can engage in such negative conversations. A good leader can also nip gossip in the bud by quelling rumors and addressing unwanted behaviors with team members individually and as a group. It is important to do this quickly, up front, in order to keep harmony within the office environment and productivity running smoothly.

Advertising

Often, most leaders are entirely too busy with their own workload that they do not take the time to brush up on their most important skills, namely their interpersonal skills. It is of utmost importance that any leader understand how to manage people with a balanced, fair mind. If this is an area that you struggle with as a leader, I challenge you to brush up on your people skills by taking a class or attending a seminar, especially within the realm of human service or psychology.

Make sure you understand the facts

A good leader should always speak with each team member involved in gossip individually, and then assess the situation objectively so that there isn’t a rush to judgment as to who may be the culprit(s). This will eliminate any feelings of favoritism or being singled out by any one person.

Advertising

Address the issue with everyone in a proper way

A leader should always remain calm when speaking with team members and office staff about gossip. Sometimes personal feelings may get in the way of being objective. For example, maybe someone as a team leader/supervisor hears about gossip that hits close to home; in other words maybe the leader experienced harassment in their past in a similar way and it is conjuring up feelings of humiliation and guilt, thus the leader may strike out against team members irrationally. It is always best to have a plan of action ahead of time as to how the gossip will be addressed, so as to avoid such issues.

Team members should always be honest about gossip

When bringing issues of gossip to your leader or being confronted about such issues, honesty is best policy at this point. Reason being, gossip can turn ugly and lead to negative work remarks such as write ups or in extreme cases being fired or sued. It is best to come clean and be honest without embellishing facts so as to get anyone into trouble falsely.

Advertising

Leaders should always confront repeat offenders

Letting gossip go on until it has escalated to a point of no return will only suffice to reinforce such behaviors or lead to possible workplace violence. We see in the news headlines constantly of violence for various reasons, bullying and harassment being a major culprit. Gossip can often feel like harassment to the person it is directed at, even if the rumors turn out to be true. The workplace should always be viewed as a place of productivity, not “off duty” time.

There you have some basics of how to quell office gossip. I hope you find that by utilizing some basic approaches you can have an office environment of peace and harmony.

Advertising

More by this author

Why You Only Find Love When You Stop Looking For It Tailor Make Your Own Natural Body Soap in 4 Easy Steps 20 Poisons To Your Happiness How To Stop Negative Gossip In Office 5 Things We Believe That Are Damaging Our Relationships

Trending in Work

1 How to Find New Growth Opportunities at Work 2 How to Write a Powerful Mission Statement for Your Business 3 20 Inspiring Vision Statement Examples (2019 Updated) 4 How to Quit Your Unfulfilling Job and Lead Your Dream Career 5 8 Critical Skills for Workplace Success and Career Advancement

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Published on March 25, 2019

How to Find New Growth Opportunities at Work

How to Find New Growth Opportunities at Work

Career advancement is an enticement that today’s companies use to lure job candidates. But to truly uncover growth opportunities within a company, it’s up to you to take the initiative to move up. You can’t rely on recruiter promises that your company will largely hire from within. Even assurances you heard from your direct supervisor during the interviewing process may not pan out.

But if you begin a job knowing that you’re ultimately responsible for getting yourself noticed, you will be starting one step ahead.

Accomplished entrepreneur and LinkedIn Co-Founder Reid Hoffman said,

“If you’re not moving forward, you’re moving backward.”

It’s important to recognize that taking charge of your own career advancement, and then mapping out the steps you need to succeed, is key to moving forward on your trajectory.

Make a Point of Positioning Yourself as a Rising Star

As an employee looking for growth opportunities within your current company, you have many avenues to position yourself as a rising star.

As an insider, you’re able to glean insights on company strategies and apply your expertise where it’s most needed. Scout out any skills gaps, then make a point to acquire and apply them. And, when you have creative ideas to offer, make it your mission to gain the ear of those in the organization who can put your ideas to the test.

Valiant shows of commitment and enterprise make managers perk up and take notice, keeping you ahead of both internal and external competitors.

Employ these other useful tips to let your rising star qualities shine:

1. Promote Your Successes to Your Higher-Ups

When your boss casually asks how you’re doing, use this valuable moment to position yourself as indispensable: “I’m floating on clouds because three clients have already commented on how well they like my redesign of the company website.”

Advertising

Tell your supervisors about any and all successes. Securing a new contract or signing a new customer should be a cause for celebration. Be sure to let your bosses know.

2. Cultivate Excellent Listening Skills

Listen well, and ask great questions. Realize that people love to talk about themselves.

But if you’re a superb listener, others will confide in you, and you’ll learn from what they share. You may even find out something valuable about your own prospects in the company.

If others view you as even-minded and thoughtful, they’ll respect your ideas and, in turn, listen to what you have to say.

3. Go to All Office Networking Events

Never skip the office Christmas party, your coworker’s retirement party, or any office birthday parties, wedding showers, or congratulatory parties for colleagues.

If others see you as a team player, it will help you rise in your company. These on-site parties will also help you mingle with co-workers whom you might not ordinarily have the chance to see. For special points, help organize one or two of these get-togethers.

Take the Extra Step to Show Your Value to the Company

Managers and HR staff know that it can be less risky – and a lot less costly — to promote from within. As internal staff, you likely have a good grasp of the authority structure and talent pool in the company, and know how to best navigate these networks in achieving both the company’s goals and your own.

The late Nobel-Prize winning economist, Gary Becker, coined the term “firm-specific,” which describes the unique skills required to excel in an individual organization. You, as a current employee, have likely tapped into these specific skills, while external hires may take a year or more to master their nuances.

Know that your experience within the company already provides value, then find ways to add even more value, using these tips:

4. Show Initiative

Commit yourself to whatever task you’re given, and make a point of going above and beyond.

Advertising

Position yourself so that you’re ready to take on any growth opportunities that present themselves. If you believe you have skills that have gone untapped, find a manager who will give you a chance to prove your worth.

Accept any stretch assignment that showcases your readiness for advancement. Stay late, and arrive early. Half of getting the best assignments is sticking around long enough to receive them.

5. Set Yourself Apart by Staying up on Everything There Is to Know About Your Company and Its Competitors

Subscribe to and read the online trade journals. Become an active member in your industry’s network of professionals. Go to industry conferences, and learn your competitors’ strategies.

Be the on-the-ground eyes and ears for your organization to stay on top of industry trends.

6. Go to Every Company Meeting Prepared and Ready to Learn

A lot of workers feel meetings are an utter waste of time. They’re not, though, because they provide face-time with higher-ups and those in a position to give you the growth opportunities you need.

Go with the intention of absorbing information and using it to your advantage — including the goals and work styles of your superiors. Respect the agenda, listen more than you speak, and never beleaguer a point.

Accelerate Your Career Growth Opportunities

A recent study found that the five predictors of employees with executive potential were: the right motivation, curiosity, insight, engagement, and determination. These qualities help you stand out, but it’s also important to establish a track record of success and to not appear to be over-reaching in your drive to move up in your company.

Try to see yourself from your boss’s position and evaluate your promote-ability.

Do you display a passion and commitment toward meeting the collective goals of the company? Do you have a motivating influence with team members and show insight and excellence in all your work?

These qualities will place you front and center when growth opportunities arise.

Advertising

Use these strategic tips to escalate your opportunities for growth:

7. Find a Mentor

With mentorship programs fast disappearing, this isn’t always easy. But you need to look for someone in the company who has been promoted several times and who also cares about your progress.

Maybe it’s the person who recommended you for the job. Or maybe it’s your direct supervisor. It could even be someone across the hall or in a completely different department.

Talk to her or him about growth opportunities within your company. Maybe she or he can recommend you for a promotion.

8. Map out Your Own Growth Opportunity Chart

After you’ve worked at the company for a few months, work out a realistic growth chart for your own development. This should be a reasonable, practical chart — not a pie-in-the-sky wish list of demands.

What’s reasonable? Do you think being promoted within two years is reasonable? What about raises? Try to inform your own growth chart with what you’ve heard about other workers’ raises and promotions.

Once you’ve rigorously charted a realistic path for your personal development within the company, try to talk to your mentor about it.

Keep refining your chart until it seems to work with your skills and proven talents. Then, arrange a time to discuss it with your boss.

You may want to time the discussion around the time of your performance review. Then your boss can weigh in with what he feels is reasonable, too.

9. Set Your Professional Bar High

Research shows that more than two-thirds of workers are just putting in their time. But through your active engagement in the organization and commitment to giving your best, you can provide the contrast against others giving lackluster performances.

Advertising

Cultivate the hard skills that keep you on the cutting edge of your profession, while also refining your soft skills. These are the attributes that make you better at embracing diverse perspectives, engendering trust, and harnessing the power of synergy.

Even if you have an unquestionably left-brain career — a financial analyst or biotechnical engineer, for example — you’re always better off when you can form kind, courteous, quality relationships with colleagues.

Let integrity be the cornerstone of all your interactions with clients and co-workers.

The Bottom Line

Growth opportunities are available for those willing to purposely and adeptly manage their own professional growth. As the old adage says,

“Half of life is showing up.”

The other half is sticking around so that when your boss is looking for someone to take on a more significant role, you are among the first who come to mind.

Remember, your career is your business!

More Resources About Ever-Growing

Featured photo credit: Zach Lucero via unsplash.com

Read Next