NJ Business Etiquette Expert: Don’t Share Political Opinions at Work
Have an opinion about Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders? How about you try to find something else to talk about.
About 3 out of 5 people don't think it's a good idea to discuss politics around the water cooler at work, a new survey says.
The results of the survey by Accountemps, a specialized temporary staffing firm, show that most people believe political talk at work can turn ugly and offend someone. But about 44 percent believe political talk helps keep workers informed.
Women employees, especially older ones, were more likely to fear that political discussions would get overheated and offend others. Among men, however, 52 percent thought political discussions were helpful.
People do not need to know who you are voting for Business etiquette expert Barbara Pachter, president of Cherry Hill-based Pachter & Associates, recommends steering clear of discussing politics at work.
"You can vote for whoever you like. But I do not need to talk about it," she said. "That is why the ballot box is closed. People do not need to know who you are voting for."
Pachter says political opinion sharing can sometimes go too far and affect the workplace environment, including how people view co-workers who have different opinions or who support different candidates.
Pachter says policies about what employees can talk about at work vary from company to company.
She says if a co-worker asks who you're voting for, turn the question around.
"Be a good listener and then ask people questions, 'Well, who are you voting for? Tell me your opinion.'
"And then they will get into their candidate, just say, "Well, that is really interesting. I will consider that,' and leave it at that."