Whether a group of five years olds are grouping together against their classmate or whether the grouping up is in the form of high school teenagers poking fun of the new girl, gossiping and spreading rumors seems to be part of human nature-a negative part. Even the workplace is not safe from rumors, whether it is in an office building or in the basement staff lounges of a nursing home. The way rumors and gossiping begins in the workplace is the same method it starts anywhere else. First, there is one worker, Worker A, who discovers something about a co-worker, Worker B, or simply does not like him or her. Secondly, Worker A takes those dislikes and shares them with others in the office, in an attempt to gain support for his or her views and to gang up against Worker B. The end result is different sides, or teams, are created.
Analyzing the problem in depth, the truth is that when someone backbites, it is because of cowardice and insecurities about him or her own self-finding faults in others to excuse one’s personal weaknesses. Also, spreading rumors could be a result of jealousy and competition. Workplace rumors are unhealthy, unproductive and they affect communication between co-workers, causing resentment. There are countless real-life examples of workplace rumors. Take an elementary school for instance. One teacher might constantly complain about her schedule which the principal has assigned and instead of speaking to the boss directly, will complain and moan over it with fellow teachers, even going to the extent of spreading false information, which is considered to be slandering.
The best way to limit or end workplace rumors is to have a zero tolerance policy. Many companies are inserting the policy in their contracts in order to increase productivity and provide a healthy working environment for employees. Furthermore, listeners should not encourage gossipers and rumor spreaders by acting as bystanders and should discourage the co-workers from this act. Sometimes, rumors will get out of hand which will require people to gather facts and confront the source and maybe even the target of the rumors in order to end the issue. It is imperative to remember that a slanderer will never be trustworthy as the listener will end up asking if his or her co-worker exposes their views and secrets to others as well.