Every office in Corporate America knows and has dealt with blabber mouths, squealers, and sly sneaks; otherwise known as gossipmongers, tattletales, and snitches. They have a tendency to be the source of a majority of problems in the office, as well as, difficult to deal with as their boss.
Nothing Nice to Say… Don’t Say Anything At All
Gossipmongers, as you know, just love to make up falsified information about their co-workers. As they’re spreading the heinous rumors all over the office it’s as if they get a secret thrill out of stirring up drama for no reason.
Insensitive rumors and cruel lies will affect the morale of your employees and even change the feel of the office. It causes everyone to be on edge and makes them wonder who would instigate such a malicious rumor.
When dealing with gossipmongers, it can be difficult to pin point exactly whom started the dreadful rumor.
This is when you have to decide to call an office wide meeting. If no one is going to admit or confess to beginning the fabricated story, then everyone needs to hear what you have to say.
Hush the Chattering
Hurting a co-worker’s feelings and subjecting them to office mockery is not tolerated. When you hold the meeting, make sure the victim is in attendance, so the whole office understands how this insensitive rumor has affected and hurt the victim.
It’s best to explain to your employees that the real issue is not whether the rumor circulating the office is true or not. It’s about respecting one another and each other’s private lives. It is no one else’s business what goes in any one’s private life.
Then, of course, apologize to your upset employee on behalf of yourself and everyone else in your department.
Tattletales: Tread the Fine Line of TMI
Tattletales and snitches open up a whole other can of worms in your office. They feel as if it’s their duty or responsibility to tell you every little, wrong thing their co-workers are doing when you’re not in the office.
As a boss, you are fully aware of what your employees are doing when they think you’re not watching.
If you’re not aware of certain issues, you find out eventually. It’s not necessary for an employee to constantly be whispering employee misconduct in your ear.
Stealing and harassment are the problems that you want to be notified about right away. Those are both grave problems that need to be addressed immediately because it has serious effects on the company and employees.
Make That Fine Line a Bold Line
The best way to deal with snitches and tattletales are to hold a private meeting with the offender. Tell them that you understand they’re trying to help and that they want you to know of anything amiss in the office, but you don’t think sharing that kind of information about other employees is appropriate.
Reiterate your appreciation for their honesty but you have to be stern. They need to understand that they’re snitching is only going to worsen issues in the workplace. If their co-workers find out that they’re being told on, it’s going to cause trust issues among everyone.
You want to keep your place of business as calm, non-confrontational, and enjoyable as possible.