Office chitchat guidelines

Editor’s Note: This post is thanks to Cara H. She gave an excellent presentation at Career Day this past weekend and included this excellent information.

You are going to talk to your co-workers. You will spend eight hours a day, five days a week with them for years if you are lucky. To keep the environment positive and keep everyone comfortable, here are some topics to avoid discussing from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.or whenever your usual work hours fall:

  • Your love life. (this includes marriages, divorces, new and old relationships, etc.)
  • Love life troubles. (If you’re following rule one, this shouldn’t be a problem.)
  • Financial issues. (Including: what an item you’re wearing cost, use your judgment here.)
  • Weekend plans. (Especially if they include parties, etc.)
  • Your salary.
  • Health. (see previous post on TMI at work.)
  • That you are looking for a new job.

Good, usually harmless topics to discuss:

  • New home
  • New appliances
  • Home repairs
  • Pets
  • Joining a gym or workout plans
  • Dinner plans (as in what you are cooking, not where you are going.)

Obviously, this list is incomplete and depends more on your work environment than anything else. In some offices, discussing that awesome purse you got for $10 would be appropriate, but discussing your Prada shoes, not so much.

What  would you add to the list?

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