A plush office, handsome salary, rewards & recognition and work life balance; all these factors define an ideal work life for most of us. Unfortunately, for large set of people, corporate life becomes nightmarish due to not so favorable aspects such as stringent policies, nasty bosses, those sycophant peers and doing the kind of work which we never dreamt of.
To mitigate all this, we generally tend to engage in friendly discussions/gossips with our peers and friends in the office cafeteria, near coffee machines, in the restrooms as we seek respite from mind-boggling work.
Well it is good to have friendly discussions with your colleagues as it helps to release stress as well as, maintain good relations at your workplace. While the office grapevine is something that is inevitable, but there are certain things that we must avoid discussing with our colleagues –
So how much appraisal did you get?
We all are too curious to know the salary, hikes, incentives of our colleagues and there is an irresistible urge to know the same, after all, it is important to know if the monetary benefit that we are drawing is adequately benchmarked as per the industry standards and as per what our peers are drawing. Nevertheless, it is termed very unprofessional to ask your colleagues their salary and benefits as it instills negative competition at the workplace. Then moment we get to know that our colleague who is working at the same level as ours is being paid more as compared to us, we tend to become apathetic towards him/her. Similarly, if your best buddy at office got a 20% hike while you got 15%, you start to term the company’s policy as unjust and do not feel motivated to work.
While, it is important to be informed about these aspects but it is more important to work with the right attitude and something that makes your attitude negative should be strictly avoided.
We make some good friends at the workplace with whom we like to sneak out for breaks. Having friends at the workplace and doing informal chit chats with them is innocuous but we should never discussed our personal problems with all of them, especially those issues that might hamper your performance at work because people might perceive it as your weak point and can use it against you in future. Moreover, not everyone is trustworthy enough to not reveal your secrets/personal issues to anyone and no one wants that any Tom, Dick or Harry should know every small thing about you. Therefore, forming camaraderie in offices is not something which is strictly prohibited but we must know where we have to draw the line.
Discussions that involve body-shaming remarks
It is a very common practice at the workplace to mock at overweight people, a girl who wears a blood red lipstick or the one who wears figure-hugging clothes that reveal her curves. It is a hard fact that despite making tremendous progress at the professional front, some people’s mind is still ruled by their judgements, preconceived notions and prejudices. People who do it might justify with the argument that it is just for fun but unintentionally they might end up mentally harassing someone. So, next time before you pass a comment on someone’s weight, body structure or attire, think twice!
Your vivid opinion about senior management
If you really like your bosses then trust me, you are one of those lucky ones but majority faces some or the other problem with the senior management in companies, be it anything related to HR policies, job profiles or style or working. It is good to voice such issues but bitiching and gossiping about your senior management with majority of your colleagues is not a good practice. You should rather discuss about it with the people whom you can count on or directly raise it to the concerned top management. Always remember, the office grapevine is as strong as an iron rod and if you ignore it then things might backfire on you, leading to an incoherent working environment.
Your personal and professional goals
It is good to choose mentors at your workplace, discuss your professional goals, career aspirations and seek their guidance. However, you need to be careful to know with whom you should discuss it and with whom you should not. It is rightly said, always love your job and not your company as the company can fire you anytime, especially if your goals do not align with that of the company’s. So, have a very astute judgement while choosing your career guides as largely they will be responsible for your career growth and you would mostly approach them to discuss your goals and aspirations.
Therefore, I would like to conclude by saying that there is absolutely nothing wrong in forming companionship with your work peers but for certain things, just be ssshhhhhh…..!