How and Why to Avoid Political Talk at Work

beverly-jonesTracy-Culbreath

Are you sick of people discussing politics at work? Or are you one of those folks who can’t seem to stop talking about the candidates?

Political topics can be explosive, and it is difficult to predict which issues your colleagues may find to be truly upsetting. What starts as casual chat could spiral into an emotional brawl, upsetting people and disrupting working relationships. And even brief comments could offend some coworkers, harming your rep or setting you up for retribution down the road.

Understanding how to manage workplace communications is key to building a resilient career. Often the best strategy is “communicate, communicate, communicate.” But when the office conversation is about politics, the smart choice is usually to stop talking.

But sometimes it is not easy to deal with people who want to impose their views or tease you into reacting. In today’s program, Beverly Jones and Tracy Culbreath King will offer tips about how you can avoid becoming bogged down in political chatter at work.

Beverly Jones, author of “Think Like an Entrepreneur, Act Like a CEO,” is a model of career resilience and reinvention. She started out as a public radio/TV writer, next created and led university programs for women, and then trail-blazed her career as a female Washington law firm partner and Fortune 500 energy executive. Throughout her varied work life, she has mentored other professionals to grow and thrive.

Since 2002, Bev has flourished as an executive coach and leadership consultant, helping professionals of all ages to advance their careers, shift directions, and become more productive. Based in the nation’s capital, she works with clients spread across the country, including senior attorneys and accomplished leaders at major federal agencies, Congress, NGOs, universities and companies of all sizes. Bev is a popular speaker and facilitator, she creates workshops and other events around the needs of her clients, and her blogs and podcasts are found at Clearways Consulting and media sites such as WOUB.

Follow Beverly: Twitter, Newsletter, Facebook, and LinkedIn

Tracy Culbreath King has a passion for conflict resolution that began after pursuing her Bachelors of Science degree from the University of Central Florida in Interpersonal Organizational Communication. After observing the consequences of poor communication on a personal and professional level, she realized she needed additional skills to address the conflicts that often resulted from communication breakdowns. In 2014 Tracy graduated from the University of Baltimore with a Master’s of Science in Negotiation and Conflict Management.

Tracy is an Alternative Dispute Resolution Coordinator at the Maryland Mediation and Conflict Resolution Office (MACRO). Tracy also serves as a conflict coach, mediator, and promotes conflict resolution processes through trainings, outreach initiatives, and continuing education for conflict resolution practitioners.

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