Good Monday Morning!
Politics is a passion of mine. I’ve been involved in several political campaigns over the years, and rumors always play a big role. If you’ve read anything about the Affordable Healthcare Act in the past few months, you’ve read at least one rumor!
Rumors are a core part of our lives. They impact companies, finances, politics and our careers. A study by European consultants ISR found that 67% of employees hear important information first through a rumor. Companies that had poor rumor management were less profitable. It’s just good business to have good rumor literacy.
What is a rumor? Nicholas DiFonzo, author of The Watercooler Effect, explains: “Rumors are simply collective intelligence in the face of uncertainty. Rumors are fundamental phenomena of social beings. We need them to help each other understand changes in our world.” Listen to my conversation with Nicholas here.
The rise in communication via social media giants like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn means we need to manage, leverage and protect ourselves from the power of rumors.
Learning how to manage rumors at work benefits everyone. It reduces stress, increases employee morale and positively impacts shareholder value.
What is the best way to deal with a rumor?
1. Suspend belief – Give the person the benefit of the doubt at the start. This may mean challenging our own natural biases.
2. Check carefully – Get the facts. Try to find as many alternative viewpoints as possible.
3. Come to your own conclusion – Make a decision based your own opinion; be aware of the influence of the group.
4. Take time to listen – Refrain from spreading the rumor until you have gone through the first three steps.
Nicholas taught me that “understanding rumors means becoming kinder, nobler, more discerning, more helpful, more humble, sharper in our thinking and more charitable in our feelings. It means having a greater appreciation for the truth.”
Listening, along the road with you!
P.S. Looking to learn more about managing your career? Our team can help. Who’s your career coach? Invest in yourself and begin to make the most of your career potential. Book here to get started.
P.P.S. Are you a Queen’s graduate? Join me for your Queen’s Alumni | CareerClass 201| Managing Your Personal Brand | Learn.Grow.Succeed! on Thurs, Oct 24th: 12-1 pm and 8-9 pm ET.