Don’t say these things at work
Finding a good job is difficult. Keeping that job can be even harder. Let’s be honest – today’s workplace is a money focused, deadline driven, productivity magnified ball of stress. Throw in constant change and a dash of uncertainty and it’s enough to grind down the hardiest of workers.
Given the dynamics of the modern workplace, it’s understandable that you might want to release some tension during a coffee clutch with co-workers. Who can blame you? But are there some things that you should never say at work because the risk is too high?
The answer is a YES – big time.
What follows are five things that should never escape your mouth on the job, regardless of how stressed you are. Doing so could seriously put your career at risk and potentially cost you your job. Are you ready?
Let’s jump right in.
1. I hate my job!
At some point, all of us get experience burnout, even when we like our job. But sometimes, the stress can get so bad that we vent out loud in ways that can be harmful. An example of this is verbalizing any variation of the following: I hate my job.
While blurting this out may feel good in the moment, it may come back to haunt you later. Have you ever been on speakerphone and didn’t know it? If you have, you know exactly why I am making this point. Do you work in an office with cameras? Guess what? Many of these devices have microphones.
I understand the examples I am sharing are extreme, but people have been canned for making exactly these kind of comments in environments where they thought it would be OK. Employers spy on workers in more ways than you think!
Do not assume that what you are saying to your friend in the next cube is sacred. Sadly, many people violate confidence as a way of currying favor with “higher ups”. If someone can use information about you to advance their position, they most likely will. The end result? You are toast.
Be very careful about how you characterize your feelings about your job with others. It is far better to release your stress in counseling, where the information you discuss is completely confidential. Sharing elsewhere can spell trouble.
2. My boss is a jerk!
This point is related to the previous. Never, ever talk crap about your boss at the workplace. Sure, everyone else you know may seriously think your manager is a jerk but that doesn’t mean you should join in on the chorus. Let them be the ones to get into trouble for having a negative attitude.
Your task is simple – sing your bosses praises whenever possible. If you can’t muster up the stomach to do this, don’t say anything at all.
If you must vent about your boss to someone, consider doing it with a friend who does not work for your organization. Other non-co-worker sources include people like family or even your therapist.
FYI: An unsafe place to vent is social media. Do not, under any circumstances, use social media to vent about your boss or workplace. Too many people have been canned for doing this. Don’t think it will happen to you? Time to think again. See this post on The Muse.
3. My client sucks!
We have all had accounts that we do not like to service. This is true for lawyers, folks in IT and people working in finance. While it may be true that the person you are assisting is a real piece of work, it is vital that you not tell others (co-workers) your true feelings. The reasons for keeping your mouth shut relate to points #1 and #2.
When you go around venting about your client publically, you send the message that you are a negative person and that you don’t like people. It may be absolutely true that the client you are trying to help is a stinking moron however, your statements about this person are a reflection on you – not them. Again, find safe, confidential sources to vent that does not include co-workers or social media.
4. I hope this place goes under!
Yep – some people actually say this one. This is particularly true for folks who work in highly competitive industries, such as retail and technology. And while it is understandable that you are totally over your job, know that you are doing yourself great harm by vocalizing your frustrations at the workplace.
If your organization is currently cutting costs, they may be looking for the slightest reason to let people go. That means you! Why give them a reason to push you out the door?
5. I can do better elsewhere!
Statements like this one may make that “elsewhere” you are talking about the unemployment line. While it may be true that you hold a number of impressive skills and abilities, that does not mean employers are waiting in the wings to hire you.
The sad truth is it can take up to a year or longer to find a new job (one with similar pay/benefits). That amount of time only increases with age. Don’t have a college degree? Add on more time.
Yes, you may be able to do better elsewhere but there is no need to broadcast your thoughts at the workplace. Doing so may come back to bite you – badly.
If you have a job today, you should do everything you can to keep it. mindful about what you say at the workplace and on social media. If you lose your job, it can take a long time before you become employed again. Think about how you deal with workplace stress and find appropriate outlets.
I’ve seen too many people over the years lose their job in a moment of frustration or anger.