Saturday, June 8, 2013
Rumors at Work...about work!
Musing this week about corporate changes. I've joined an organization that I know will have constant change. Change has been a constant in every organization that has employed me. The changes included mergers and acquisitions both large and small, company name changes, strategy changes, product changes, leadership changes, layoffs of friends and co-workers on small and large scale, policy changes and more. The worst was the death of the founder and CEO at a small business. One situation included knowing that my boyfriend at the time was on the list of people to be terminated. The information came to me only as a result of my position. I quickly decided that telling him would not change the situation nor help him and would absolutely be unethical. I could not be sure how either decision would impact our relationship but later he confirmed that he felt I had done the right thing. I also realized that I personally would not want to find out that a friend had more info about my employment before I had it myself. Those early experiences may be why I have become so used to change that it seems like I can feel it coming. In fact, recently just minutes after thinking of this very topic a corporate email went out about changes within the leadership of my new organization. I've only been employed two weeks, work remotely and have no connections internally or any other obvious reason to be thinking about this topic. But it's clear this isn't a skill unique to me; many are able to sense when changes are afoot whether they are of an exciting nature or a difficult ones. To me it feels like the air changes. Maybe it is that air that gets the rumor mill going and in the absence of information people often just make things up. My advice to people that hearing rumors at work about change is to listen well, say little and do nothing. I won't tell you not to gather information when possible but stay professional and remember that often what you hear has no bearing on what is really going on behind the scenes. Do not let unfounded rumors drive your thoughts and behaviors. Whatever is happening, it will come out eventually and you will survive better if you keep your focus on your assigned duties while mentally preparing yourself for any possibility.