The other day I was talking to someone outside my line about an IT issue and how best to address. During the course of the conversation the topic turned from business to gossip and then into an attack on a person’s character.
CIOs are privy to a lot of information that we come across during our everyday processes and during executive meetings. That is just the nature of the beast and part of carrying the chief in your title. As the conversation devolved into this maligning gossip I quickly recognized what was occurring and stayed quiet. I was hoping that the person would recognize that one I was uncomfortable and two due to my position could not and should not participate in such talk.
Eventually I had to say that I had no comment on the matter and walked away.
I have zero tolerance for gossip in the work place. When I hear it or get wind of it, I tune out. From my experience gossip sessions have a tendency of sweeping everyone into it like a tsunami. And as it builds momentum your name becomes associated with it indirectly.
It is best in the long-run to stay clear, very clear from it.