If you’ve been working with your employer for a long time, sometimes it can begin to feel like you’re working with family. Although it’s great to work with a close-knit team, it’s also important to remember that some things are best left unsaid. Don’t get so comfortable with your co-workers that you start spilling all of your secrets. It’s best to keep a bit of distance between you and your teammates. No matter how comfortable you get, always remain professional.
Even if you’ve become friendly with your supervisor or your co-workers, there’s always that chance that something you say will come back to bite you. And that bite could come in the form of ruining your reputation or even losing your job. So be careful and know when to keep your lips sealed. Let’s take a look at 10 things you should never tell your employer.
1. I hate working here.
If you hate your job, quietly look for another one and keep your plans quiet. If you don’t, you may end up unemployed a lot sooner than you had planned. If you’re miserable, blurting out your hatred is not the way to handle the situation. Roughly 70% of American workers say they’re not satisfied with their jobs, according to Gallup research, so fleeing to a new employer won’t necessarily make you happy. Until you decide whether to stay, aim to do your best work.
2. I don’t think I’m going to pass the drug test.
Your drug habit shouldn’t be discussed at the office. And you definitely shouldn’t say that you’re not certain about passing a random drug test. This will immediately raise concerns about whether you’re coming to work high. Do yourself a favor and leave the recreational drugs for the weekend.
3. I hope this rash clears up.
This belongs in the TMI file. Keep any information about itchy rashes or scratches and burns from your spicy date under wraps. When it comes to work, only share personal information on a “need to know” basis. Your employer surely doesn’t need to know how you spend your free time or what your dates do to you.
4. My co-worker is incompetent.
The co-worker’s competence level is up to your boss to decide. There are usually one or two slackers in every office, so you might as well get used to it. Unless you directly manage this person, your best bet is to keep your opinion to yourself. Bad-mouthing a fellow worker just makes you look petty. Unless this co-worker’s behavior is directly affecting your progress at work, don’t say anything.
5. I’m taking a sick day because I’m tired.
You should take a sick day because you’re actually sick—not because you’re tired or just don’t feel like coming to work. If you truly don’t want to go to the office, schedule a vacation or personal day in advance. Your sick days are not additional vacation time.
6. I’m dating the new hire.
What you do after work is your business. Your love life shouldn’t be a topic for water cooler discussion. If you’re taking advantage of the dating opportunities at work, you’ve got company. Roughly 22% of men and 15% of women said they have had an office fling, while less than 10% said they met their future spouse at work, according to a Vault survey. However, if co-worker dating is against company policy, you’re playing with fire. If you’re going to ignore the rules, don’t talk about your weekend hook-ups. Also, be prepared for the fallout if you and your new cubicle buddy break up.
7. I don’t feel like going to this boring meeting.
Work isn’t about what you feel like doing. You go to work to help your employer accomplish its mission. If meetings are necessary for the company to effectively reach its goals, it would be in your best interest to attend — without complaining. Unless you have a really good reason for not attending, such as an impending deadline or illness, go to the meeting. And even if you don’t want to be there, have a good attitude about it. Approximately 72% of employers said they look for employees who have a good attitude when it’s time to make an employment decision, according to a CareerBuilder survey.
8. I don’t see myself working here much longer.
You’re not obligated to work for your employer until you’re old and grey. You can waltz out that door any time you please. However, if you have plans to leave in the future, it’s best not to share that you’re looking for a job. Even if you feel like you can trust your co-workers, one of them could let it slip out that your days with the company are numbered. No one should be privy to the fact that you’re leaving until you’ve signed your offer letter and you’re official with your new employer.
9. You’re a terrible manager.
Do you have a horrible boss? If you like your job but just can’t stand your supervisor, you might be able to work things out. Schedule a meeting and see if there is a way you can work together more effectively. Whatever you do, don’t just say how terrible he or she is. Work on a solution to your clashing work styles.
10. I voted for ___________.
Elections are usually a hot topic in the office. However, voicing your political views may alienate some of your teammates. Avoid unnecessary office conflict by steering clear of politics.