I’ve never tied up a boss and kept him hostage in his own home like Dolly Parton, Lily Tomlin, and Jane Fonda did in the movie 9 to 5, but I have understood the desire. The only thing that’s gotten me through certain jobs was commiserating with a good friend and co-worker who felt the same way that I did – laughing about the things that drove us crazy and trying to find humor in a less than ideal situation.
With as many hours as we spend at work, our colleagues, even the ones that are not our favorite, become a big part of our social web. It can be tempting to share our thoughts, especially so when we want validation. But it goes without saying that we should be careful about what we say, and to whom we say it to, at work. I’ve seen more than one secret office romance and covert feelings of dissatisfaction end up not being secret. Particularly in difficult economic times, it’s important to frame what you say positively. Stress about job stability makes gossip spread exponentially. The colleague that you shared an off the record conversation with over a glass of wine at the Holiday party may not be the trusted confidant you assumed they were.
Everyone has the desire to be heard. Pretending to feel positively about a work environment you don’t is a challenge, but the repercussions of the alternative may prove more daunting. Share wisely.