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Power and gossip

Business is relational. Employees on production lines, knowledge workers in offices, sales staff on the road, managers within organizations, and corporate vision casters all succeed because of healthy, supportive relationships.

Company gossips destroy relationships. In a world where business is relationships, gossips destroy business.

Gossips love power. They can’t resist the exhilaration of sharing destructive bits of “secret” information. Knowledge is power and negative information is easy power. Positive comments and affirmations travel like snails. However, Bob’s arguments with the boss, his marital struggles, or failure to win a client’s business travel like wild fire.

Gossips hate others. I’m using the term “hate” to describe motivations and behaviors that tear down rather than lift up. Gossips love hate because hate is the shortcut to power.


Are you an interventionist or a pacifist when it comes to gossip? When, if ever do you intervene? How should leaders deal with office gossip?


Related articles:

4 ways to spot backstabbers before it’s too late
Sweet backstabbers


Leadership Freak

Dan Rockwell

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