How office gossip can hurt your job

Gossip can negatively affect everyone at the office.

A new Georgia Tech study by Eric Gilbert examined 600,000 e-mails from an Enron database and found that 15 percent were gossip e-mails. Gossip affects all employees, from the entry-level worker to the CEO. The average employee sends 112 e-mails each day. The number of e-mails and the amount of gossip will only grow, due to how connected we are as a society. Office gossip can hurt your career if you aren’t smart about it, because your co-workers could see you as dishonest and untrustworthy. When you’re building your career, you want to have a positive effect on the people around you so that they want to work with you, not against you. Here are three ways to handle office gossip:

Know the facts:
Figure out if the gossip has fact to it or not. Without mentioning names, ask the people around you if there is any truth to the e-mail or not. This way, you can assess whether it affects you or if it was just written to get attention.

Know your limits: Many of us use gossip to build trust and forge relationships with our colleagues. If you find yourself spreading gossip, try and remove yourself from those types of conversations the best you can. For instance, don’t go to the next happy hour with your colleagues.

Ignore it completely: Understand that any e-mail you send can be easily forwarded to one or more people within seconds. It’s much better to not get involved in office gossip altogether, because the talk can come back to you. You don’t want people saying bad things about you when you’re trying to build a career.

Encourage more positive conversations: In order to create a positive work environment, spread company victories and public news instead of secrets. Try taking the lead and sharing positive information with your colleagues, and they might follow.

– Dan Schawbel is the founder of Millennial Branding, a Gen-Y research and consulting company. Subscribe to his updates at Facebook.com/DanSchawbel.
Metro does not endorse the opinions of the author, or any opinions expressed on its pages.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking

Local

K-9 nose helps capture $150K in cocaine at…

A furry, four-legged security agent helped authorities stop an illegal cocaine shipment from sneaking past JFK customs.

National

Minnesota man asked to leave Southwest flight after…

A man and his two sons were asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after the man sent a tweet complaining about being treated rudely by a gate agent.

National

Man sues hospital after surprise penis amputation

An Alabama man who went in to a hospital last month for a circumcision awoke after surgery to find his penis had been amputated, his lawyer said on Thursday.

Movies

Review: Brett Ratner's big 'Hercules' movie is small…

The latest "Hercules," starring Dwayne Johnson as the half-god beefcake of Greek myth, strips its hero and tale of most of its fantastical elements.

Arts

Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…

Television

Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

Going Out

Grab a pedestrian and start dancing at What…

As a New Yorker, I’ve mastered the art of focusing my gaze straight ahead. Though it occasionally piques my interest, the absurdities that play out…

U.S. Soccer

Orlando City takes shot at NYCFC over Frank…

Orlando City reminded the world how big a signing Brazilian star Kaka earlier this month with a photo of Kaka mobbed by fans juxtaposed against Lampard.

NBA

Jeremy Lin says 'Linsanity' is over as he…

Jeremy Lin lit up the NBA two years ago with his play for the Knicks but he has no desire to recreate "Linsanity" in his new career with the Lakers.

NFL

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…

Tech

Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.

Tech

Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.

Tech

Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.

Style

Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.