“Silence is one of the hardest arguments to refute.” – Josh Billings, American Writer
There have been a lot of hot-button issues circulating that made headlines this week (SCOTUS’ decision, Paula Deen’s choice of words, murder trials, etc.)
It’s almost impossible not to have a side in any of those issues. However, the workplace is not the place to share those opinions.
I’m sure you guys already know the unspoken rule about not discussing religion, politics, and other controversial issues at work; but there’s another trap I see too many people fall into—responding when someone else brings up those issues.
There will be one in every crowd—the radical that must spread his or her views with anyone who has ears. The best thing to do is to either not take a side or make it clear that you don’t discuss certain things in a work setting.
You may not think it’s that big of a deal, but the fact of the matter is you don’t know how the person to whom you are speaking will react. Furthermore, you don’t know who could be listening to your conversation. Someone could walk by and hear your views and spread them to others in the office. And if anyone doesn’t agree with what you expressed, that could cause a bias that affects how you are viewed.
If the certain someone who doesn’t agree with your opinion turns out to be your boss, think about how that could affect a raise, promotion, or the general environment of your workplace.
And for you cyber-ranters: think twice before posting your heated opinions onto your social media account. You never know who could end up seeing it and using it against you.
There’s already so many physical attributes that could skew how people perceive you—don’t give them any more ammunition to be bias towards you by expressing opinions (unrelated to work) that could be taken the wrong way.
Director of Communications, Strategic Government Resources