Work confidentiality

iCe

Silver Member
Hey all,

This is more to write things down and calm myself. I see a lot of respect for each other here and I feel safe enough to share this, so this is a compliment for this board :)
I've applied for another job/function in our organization. I've only told my direct co-workers and my manager last week that I had an interview lined up.
So I was at the office yesterday for a meeting and someone walks up to me 'heeeey how did your application go?'. Never told her that i applied.

It's very rare that I've been so flabbergasted and seething at the same time. Apparently someone has told her who has applied for that function and knew the names of 3 of my direct co-workers (2 including myself are true, the 3rd didn't apply). I had a meeting with my direct co-workers after that and told this and someone said 'I've heard via-via that the gossip on the floor is going on and that 2 of you have applied, and the name of one of you was dropped too'.

So for me a huge breach in trust since probably a lot of co-workers now know about this and I wasn't the source. I'm seething about this!


/rant
 
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iCe

Silver Member
I long ago took the attitudes that:

i) Colleagues are not my friends. 'Friendly' is not the same as 'friends'.
ii) Any conversation at work is not to be treated as confidential. Unless it's legally confidential and there are official structures in place.

I'm sure it feels like a betrayal but unfortunately gossip spreads fast.

I guess that's the lesson I'm about to learn. Thanks for your reply.
 

s1212z

Silver Member
If you get a new job, how does your absence effect your organization and other co-workers? Who will train your replacement? Will others have to work extra to fill your role if no one is immediately available? It is not necessarily gossip if you leaving cause a change in their work life and having an update may be really be asking, 'what are we going to do once you leave'...in that case, it is their business. I don't know your work or workplace, perhaps it is all gossip but some teams are small and some individuals have talent that is sorely missed left to scramble to fill the void. I'd just say consider this before sending any nasty email about privacy....but of course if its just nasty gossip, that is not cool (but at least you have another potential job so you don't have to work with these people) :)
 

Juniper

Gold Member
I long ago took the attitudes that:

i) Colleagues are not my friends. 'Friendly' is not the same as 'friends'.
ii) Any conversation at work is not to be treated as confidential. Unless it's legally confidential and there are official structures in place.

I'm sure it feels like a betrayal but unfortunately gossip spreads fast.
This

Sounds like you learned a valuable lesson.

Below is the approach I take at the workplace. I assume anything I say could be shared, so I am very selective about what I divulge.

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Chris Whitten

Silver Member
I long ago took the attitudes that:

i) Colleagues are not my friends. 'Friendly' is not the same as 'friends'.
ii) Any conversation at work is not to be treated as confidential. Unless it's legally confidential and there are official structures in place.
Ha funny.
If I want my view on something to get around a group of people, I tell one of them 'confidentially'. Seems to work every time.
 

iCe

Silver Member
Ha funny.
If I want my view on something to get around a group of people, I tell one of them 'confidentially'. Seems to work every time.

Reminds of a similar story many years ago. I had a feeling this girl I knew was very loose lipped about what I told, so I made up a bogus story really liking another girl (girl X) and whaddayaknow... next time I was in our mutual fav bar I got asked about liking girl X by someone else and I knew enough. Confronted the culprit, she denied talking and I've never seen anyone get more red when I said "you sure, 'cos I only told you'.
 

iCe

Silver Member
If you get a new job, how does your absence effect your organization and other co-workers? Who will train your replacement? Will others have to work extra to fill your role if no one is immediately available? It is not necessarily gossip if you leaving cause a change in their work life and having an update may be really be asking, 'what are we going to do once you leave'...in that case, it is their business. I don't know your work or workplace, perhaps it is all gossip but some teams are small and some individuals have talent that is sorely missed left to scramble to fill the void. I'd just say consider this before sending any nasty email about privacy....but of course if its just nasty gossip, that is not cool (but at least you have another potential job so you don't have to work with these people) :)

I can understand where you come from. It's a pretty big organization (around 30.000 people in total, our region of the division has around 140 people working) and although my position is not the most popular one, I'm not the only one (luckily) and it's not that hard to get a replacement if they post the vacancy. And I'd still have a month or 2 notice before I leave, managers always confer with each other about this and find a consensus about the date that I would transition. It's more that I keep a low profile when applying for other jobs. If I get turned down I really dislike telling the same story over and over. Not to mention all the sensation seekers (like the one who approached me yesterday).

We're a semi-government organization and confidentially is held in high regard with the work that we do, I guess that explains why I'm so shocked about this.
 

roncadillac

Member
No one is on your side. Never ever ever. Don't trust anyone at work. Not saying one can't be friendly nor should you be standoffish towards coworkers but don't trust anyone.

I work at a place that has severe facilities issues including mold, leaking roof, inoperable HVAC systems, etc and our corporate parent company knows and could honestly care less. It's one of those "shut up and make us money" environments. Over the course of one week we had a heath inspection complaint and an OSHA complaint, my position has me CC'ed on these types of emails so I went and showed one of our new junior managers... She literally started shouting over the room, with customers and staff, "Did you hear that everyone!? Ian said we are getting shut down!!!" I haven't said a single word to this person beyond "hello" and "goodbye" since.
 
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JoeVermont

Active Member
I've seen this happen to others and had a similar thing happen to me. My M.O. now is if I don't want anyone to know I have to make sure I don't tell anyone. I mean no one - well, my wife, for sure... but other than that..... ;)

Lesson two I've learned over the years; people will often use pieces of gossip to increase their capital and look more knowledgeable in the eyes of their co-workers.

Lesson three I've seen in the workplace (not in your case, certainly), people will sometimes use gossip to telegraph a message. By telegraph I mean getting the message around without saying it yourself. In other words, I deliberately tell my co-worker that I am mad at the boss and thinking of leaving in the hopes the word gets around and the boss somehow magically changes his behavior. Direct conversations are tough and almost always are effective.

BTW, thanks for sharing your story, I hope you get the gig you want!
 

someguy01

Platinum Member
No one is on your side. Never ever ever. Don't trust anyone at work. Not saying one can't be friendly nor should you be standoffish towards coworkers but don't trust anyone
This.
Words to live by.
Trust no one. Especially any man that takes more than 15 minutes to do their hair. I am not joking. In my practical experience they are the most untrustworthy. Oh, and any member of the 1%, they're pure evil.
 

Al Strange

Platinum Member
This.
Words to live by.
Trust no one. Especially any man that takes more than 15 minutes to do their hair. I am not joking. In my practical experience they are the most untrustworthy. Oh, and any member of the 1%, they're pure evil.
Woaaah there! When I had hair down to my @rse I used to take 3 bottles in the shower and then apply serum and hairspray to prevent frizz and those nasty split ends…it didn’t make me a bad person!:unsure:

PS Any responses to this post will be treated in the strictest confidence…:sneaky:
 

Ransan

Senior Member
Yea like others have said, I also do not share personal, or even in downtime, spend it chit chatting with my peers.

Throughout my profession, I’ve adopted a stoicism that I take everywhere. No small talk, never rattled, emotions stay the hell away from my work, seemingly under control whether it’s during audits or swimming like a duck at Year’s End deadlines.

I’ve often been said about that when I open my mouth you better listen because something important is coming out.
That makes me feel like I have a sage advantage.

But we all know here that’s not the case 😂.
 

Mediocrefunkybeat

Platinum Member
Woaaah there! When I had hair down to my @rse I used to take 3 bottles in the shower and then apply serum and hairspray to prevent frizz and those nasty split ends…it didn’t make me a bad person!:unsure:

PS Any responses to this post will be treated in the strictest confidence…:sneaky:

As a man of much hair, I must agree that it's important to take care of it. It may take four hours to dry but that doesn't stop me washing and conditioning it at least every other day. It's vital!
 
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