Gossiping at the workplace

  1. Is there a lot of gossiping at your workplace? Seems to be a lot at the place I work and it makes me put my guard up and I'm just not as trusting as I usually am. With goosping I mean nurses complaining/ talking about other nurses and doctors in a non-flattering way. This includes chargenurses and the manager. This hasn't been the case at previous jobs I've had . It definitely effects how happy I am there. How is it at your workplace? I'm afraid to leave based on this only to discover the grass isn't greener on the other side. And yes, I do stand up to people but it still does not stop the gossiping.
    •  
  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   quazar
    BTDT, got the t-shirt. Keep your mouth shut and your ears open. Never take sides, never participate. Walk away from the nurses's station when things get heated (suddenly have to pee/check on your patient/stock a room). If you can't walk away, become very engrossed in charting or something else work related. Just always keep your mouth shut and never, ever participate or take a side. Ever.

    Workplace gossiping is a ubiquitous problem, and yes, it does make you not trust your coworkers and WITH GOOD REASON, in my opinion. The way I let it not bother me is to do what I advised in the first paragraph, and to recognize that I cannot control what other people say behind my back (because I'm sure things have been said) but I can absolutely control whether or not I choose to get caught up in the gossip and drama. When you don't participate, they usually leave you alone.
  4. by   ~Mi Vida Loca~RN
    It's been that way at every single place I have worked. I refuse to participate in it. I also refuse to just allow it to happen around me without calling it out. People have learned not to put others down around me anymore. Worst thing you can do is get involved. Focus on your patients and caring for them and if you have down time go visit with your patient or stock or find something else useful to do. Don't get sucked into the negativity and be assured these people that sit around putting other people down, will no doubt do it to each other and you as well.

    I was at one of our nurses stations one time charting and in a facetious mood. I could hear this one nurse who I knew didn't care for me, talking about me.She was at the main nurses station where our Doc room was also. She was saying things that were outright laughable they were so absurd. I was good friends with a lot of the residents and we hung out sometimes to grab a bite to eat, but mostly it was a learning environment. They learned some from me and I mostly from them and we had amazing working relationships. But this nurse was convinced I had to be sleeping with all of them. So I am sitting there and then she said something else that she got totally wrong and I rolled my chair back and leaned back so they all could see me (she was the only one talking, the other nurses you could tell weren't engaging and 1 attending who I knew well was there and a few interns) and I said "Actually I only sleep with him on Tuesdays, I sleep with ***** on M,W and F because he's pretty good and I still have Thursdays open if you know someone. But I can't lie, it's EXHAUSTING. I think I need some panties with built in ice packs." Then I rolled right back to my computer and about 45 seconds later you heard everyone laughing and the nurse turned so red and angry and marched off to the break room.
  5. by   traumaRUs
    Moved to a different forum
  6. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Stay out of it.
  7. by   llg
    It depends on what type of gossip it is. Not all gossip is malicious. When people have worked together for a while, it's natural to comment on their recent engagement ... pregnancy announcement ... new car ... vacation ... work activities ... etc. Social discourse creates social bonds, friendships, a sense of community, culture, etc. That kind of gossip is often normal and healthy. People who don't interact in a social way with their co-workers often find themselves isolated at work, less engaged, less supported, more alone in society in general.

    However, if it is cruel conversation ... mean-spirited ... etc. ... well, that's another story. That's the stuff you want to stay away from. But don't confuse the two. Don't let your fear/distaste of the mean stuff prevent you from engaging in friendly conversation with co-workers. And keep in mind that sometimes, all co-workers have in common is work and other co-workers. So it's OK to do a little friendly, kind-spirited gossiping.
  8. by   caffeinatednurse
    There's a difference between socializing with your coworkers (which can be productive and bring about change) and what I like to call malicious gossiping (which is hurtful and can be damaging to one's career).

    There's been plenty of times at my facility when there's been downtime and we've discussed some of the issues/problems that we observe in our workplace, including other coworkers. This is not done in a malicious way, and in my humble opinion, it's better to discuss the metaphorical elephant in the room than it is to ignore it. When you ignore problems, they just continue to get worse. And then there's those times when discussing it with my coworkers actually allows us to brainstorm and come up with a solution, which is difficult to do by yourself when you're frustrated and exhausted.

    I distinguish the above from malicious gossiping, which I have personally experienced. You know it when you see (or rather hear) it. When someone walks up to you and tells you that there's a new rumor going around that you're hooking up with so-and-so and it just so happens to occur when you're up for a promotion (and you've never been the target of gossiping before). Or when as soon as you walk into a room, everyone becomes quiet and you get nothing but awkward stares. I am happy to shut down that kind of gossiping with a touch of sarcasm and snark.

    I have talked with older, more seasoned nurses, and they've all reassured me that it occurs in almost every area of nursing. Either learn to ignore it or confront it.
  9. by   NurseJ04
    I don't really have anything to add, but I am a new nurse and thankfully will be leaving my LTC LPN job soon for a RN job in a hospital. I only worked every other weekend at my LPN job but now that I am there more since school is done, the gossip is incessant. Morale is overall poor, everyone talks about everyone (including management) and some people have just gotten downright nasty. I am usually pretty good at ignoring it or just listening but admittedly I have gotten caught up a time or two. Our staff is very small so it's hard to escape. It's making me pretty miserable as well. Hang in there! (And yes I realize there will most likely be gossiping at my new job, but hopefully with a bigger staff it will be easier to avoid.)
  10. by   Orca
    Quote from NurseJ04
    I don't really have anything to add, but I am a new nurse and thankfully will be leaving my LTC LPN job soon for a RN job in a hospital. I only worked every other weekend at my LPN job but now that I am there more since school is done, the gossip is incessant. Morale is overall poor, everyone talks about everyone (including management) and some people have just gotten downright nasty.
    When I moved to my current city, I worked for an LTC center when I first arrived. I started work in early December, so it was only a couple of weeks before their annual Christmas party. The place where they were holding the party was only a couple of blocks from the center. I didn't go because I had just started work there, and I only knew a few people. That didn't stop my ears from being forcibly filled the next day with news of who drank too much, who left with who, and so on - information that I promptly discarded, because it had nothing to do with my job.

    Some people enjoy being the one to break "news", even if it is unverified or totally fabricated.

close