HR Bean-Spilling and Office Gossip
>> Gossip travels fast in the office
By Heidi Bedore
Loose lips in the workplace may be the foreman’s flaw, as stats reveal that poor managerial communication leads to increased office gossip.
Around one in every five office workers engage in gossip. In the majority of cases, gossip walkie-talkie’s are filling the office airways with rumors about the personal lives of workers and work-related managerial secrets. Office chatter is going mobile, too, with around 25% of all office workers now gossiping via instant messaging. Sound like a waste of time? It is! Office workers spend up to three hours each work week hearing, seeing and speaking gossip.
Management takes the blabbing blame, as a study on office gossip showed that only 7% of office employees felt their bosses did a good job at spreading important company info. As a result, 43% said that management communication was so unspeakably bad that office chit chat has no choice but to pick up management’s slack.
While most HR experts agree that rumor-mongering hasn’t a place in the office, Dawn Rosenberg McKay, Career Planning Consultant, says that your inter-cubicle grapevine can do good. It carries important info that management often doesn’t care, or think, to share, and it can be a good conduit if you need to speak your mind about problems at work.
A recent case of employment discrimination revealed that even your friendly neighborhood HR department could unleash your confidential info to the office. That’s what happened to a transsexual factory worker who was recently fired from her job after the rumour-mill whirled into action. When HR spilled the beans about her gender switcher-oo, she faced harassment galore as her sexual specs circulated the workplace.
Concerned about HR spilling your beans to office gossip mongers? To be certain that your top secret beans are well secured, try baking them into a tasty dish and serving them to your human resources manager. That way your Baked Rumor Beans will stay internal, just as they should.