How to avoid work gossip
  1. Find an outlet at home. To avoid miscommunications and work gossip, find an outlet at home to express your thoughts and feelings. …
  2. Redirect your attention. …
  3. Separate the personal and professional. …
  4. Be transparent. …
  5. Be an active listener. …
  6. Address conflict. …
  7. Be respectful. …
  8. Know your audience.

A useful distinction to make when determining what constitutes office gossip is whether you are speaking about someone with the intention of being beneficial or detrimental. To point out that Jane has missed some work due to her divorce and that you find it hard to believe her spouse left her is one thing. Saying, “I know Jane is going through a difficult time,” is one thing. Why don’t we see if she’d like to go out to lunch this week or see if we can help out on one of her projects?

HOW TO DEAL WITH WORKPLACE GOSSIP | Avoiding drama at work

How to avoid work gossip

Here are some actions you can take to stop office rumors in a respectful and positive manner.

1. Find an outlet at home

Find a way to express yourself at home to prevent misunderstandings and office rumors. You can gain perspective before going back to the office by making a safe space at home where you can unwind and process work-related stress.

Throughout the day, during breaks, work gossip typically occurs. For instance, if two coworkers are waiting to use the restroom, they might begin talking about their respective workdays. Instead of talking to a coworker, consider these alternatives:

2. Redirect your attention

Refocusing your attention is a great way to avoid office rumors. Try not to join the conversation if you see your coworkers gossiping. Instead, consider stepping away from the situation. Consider taking advantage of this time to talk with your manager about a potential project idea or starting your lunch break early. To stay productive and focused, try to divert your attention elsewhere.

3. Separate the personal and professional

Think carefully about the information you feel comfortable sharing with coworkers to prevent rumors and the spread of false information. In order to work effectively, try to create boundaries between your personal and professional lives. You can use the conversation starters on the following list to steer clear of potential workplace gossip:

You can engage in casual conversation without gossiping by using topics like these. You can leave the conversation or try to change the subject if otherwise professional conversations suddenly devolve into office rumors.

4. Be transparent

Be truthful about your intentions and feelings to prevent office rumors. If you need to talk to a coworker about something, think about doing so in a private area so that no one hears you.

Professional environments can be competitive, too. To prevent rumors and gossip, try to be open with your coworkers about your intentions.


Graphic designers Tom and Teyana work for a new business in Chicago. They’re both vying for a promotion, and tomorrow morning we’ll find out who wins. Tom worries about Teyana’s reaction to the news.

Tom asks Teyana to have a private conversation with him during lunch to address these concerns instead of bringing them up with her coworkers. They are able to express their feelings, thoughts, and worries in an open manner. Tom and Teyana had a focused and effective afternoon at work because they were honest with one another right away.

In this instance, Tom and Teyana have a private conversation to directly address their conflict. This allowed them to resolve the problem alone, without the assistance of their coworkers.

What is work gossip?

Spreading untrue rumors about coworkers or talking about a coworker’s personal life without that person’s knowledge or consent is known as “work gossip.” Here are a few illustrations of what workplace rumors might look like:

Workplace rumors can circulate in casual conversations among coworkers or on social media. Try to avoid situations that could lead to gossip at work to maintain your professionalism.

Work gossip tips

The following considerations should be made as you deal with office gossip:

Be an active listener

To avoid misunderstandings, practice being an active listener. When conversing with coworkers, try to maintain eye contact. This can demonstrate to them that you pay attention to and value what they have to say.

Address conflict

If there is a conflict at work, resolve it immediately. A great way to resolve disputes without slander is through direct communication.

Be respectful

Consider how you can respectfully and honestly express your feelings if you or a coworker are going through a conflict. This can help you develop mutual trust and continue to be productive throughout the day.

Know your audience

Consider the impact of your words before sharing a humorous story with a coworker. When engaging in casual conversations, try to keep the environment and circumstances in mind to prevent misunderstandings and rumors.

Here are some questions to consider:

Be empathetic

Take into account your coworkers’ feelings before responding to them in order to uphold a respectful workplace. Consider how you would feel in their shoes and take note of any potential personal sensitivities.


Why should we avoid gossip at work?

Gossip leads to toxicity. Everyone is less content at work as a result of the culture of fear and distrust that is created. Everyone notices that the person being the subject of the gossip must watch their back because they feel mocked and embarrassed. All of this prevents spontaneity, effectiveness, or simple enjoyment.

How do you handle gossip at work?

How to Stop Office Gossip and Create a More Positive Workplace
  1. Address the Specific Culprits. Managers should first speak with the individuals who are spreading the rumors in order to put a stop to it.
  2. Meet with Your Entire Team. …
  3. Encourage Positive Gossip. …
  4. Lead By Example. …
  5. Take Action When Needed.

How do you ignore gossiping co workers?

Don’t give them anything to use against you when they return to their gossiping friends if one of them has the nerve to speak to you directly rather than just talking about you behind your back. Maintain eye contact, speak calmly, and then politely say you must go as you have a deadline.

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