3 Things To Bear In Mind When Talking Politics At Work…

February 23, 2016

If asked, most people would advise professionals to abstain from discussing politics at work.

People have their own opinions about candidates, policies and laws, and many feel very strongly about them.

Insulting a colleague because of his or her political beliefs can create conflict and disrupt work.

However, it is unrealistic to expect politics to completely stay out of the office.

Elections or news events can promote these discussions, which you may not always avoid. In this article, we will provide three dos of discussing politics at work.

Respect Others

If you choose to participate in a political conversation, you must remind yourself that it is very likely that you will hear opinions that you may not agree with.

Politics and religion are some of the most heated subjects that come up, so you must be prepared to control your emotions and your temper if your co workers say something you vehemently disagree with.

The main thing to concentrate on is to respect others, regardless of what they believe or don’t believe in. Instead of using phrases such as, “Are you kidding me?” or “I can’t believe you are saying this,” trying saying, “I respectfully disagree,” or “To each their own.”

This will let the other party know that you are not on the same page as them, but will not offend them.

Allow Others To Hold Their Opinions

Even though you can do so respectfully, you must not lecture or continuously try to get others to adopt your views.

Do let others hold their own opinions, no matter how strongly you may disagree with them.

You may definitely state your own thoughts on the subject matter, but do so once, instead of going on and on, boring or even angering others.

Keep An Open Mind

Although it may be hard to believe, your colleagues may, in fact, be more knowledgeable about a political matter than you are.

Therefore, you should try to keep an open mind when discussing politics, and actually take the time to consider others’ perspectives.

Even if you don’t fully switch to their way of thinking, you may get insight about an angle or a position you have not considered before.

Politics can definitely create hostility and conflict in the workplace if the debate gets out of hand.

If this occurs, management should consider creating a policy to keep political talk out of the office.

Otherwise, a healthy political conversation can promote communication and camaraderie in the workplace.

Many thanks

Mark Williams

Head of Training and Development

Mark Williams 3

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