Controlling Office Rumors

Office rumors can sap morale (do you think there will be layoffs?) and productivity (let’s ask everyone if they think there will be layoffs). And, of course, if everyone is talking except management, employees assume the worst. So instead of trying to stop the conversation, join it, advises Chip Heath, a professor of organizational behavior at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business. Create a “Heard on the Street” section on your intranet where employees can ask about rumors. Respond with the dope, as straight as possible. And keep your company’s opinion leaders in the loop. That way, when they spread the word, it’s more likely to be your word.

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