Rule 31: Shut up! If you can’t say anything nice

Famous Nigerian Clothier, Alero Idowu of Hallero Couture

A
really easy rule to understand but a tough one to follow. We all like to
gossip, to bitch, and to talk about our bosses behind their back.  The rule, however, is – don’t do it. Learn to
say only positive things, nice things, and complimentary things.  People judge you by what you say as much as
how you say it (see Rule 2), so be known as someone who is always pleasant and
upbeat.

       
                   So, don’t
gossip
‘Did you know that at
the last company conference Steve,
from accounts was seen coming out of Debbie’s,
from marketing, bedroom in the early hours of Sunday morning?  And that twice since they have been seen in
Luigi’s at lunchtime and Kathy swears she’s seen them holding
hands in the lift.  Steve’s married, you know, and I thought Debbie was engaged.  What do
you think?  Should they be carrying on
like this?


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Answer:  ‘What’s
this got to do with me?’

“Gossiping
is the occupation of idle minds – those who haven’t got enough work to do.  It is also the domain of workers who have
mindless jobs to do – jobs they can do without thinking and thus have to occupy
themselves with inane chatter, tittle-tattle, rumor, lies and malicious
stories”

Good,
it has nothing to do with you, unless Steve happens to be your boss and
his work is being affected, or you happen to be Debbie’s fiancé.  This rule says that you don’t gossip.  It doesn’t say you don’t listen.  You may find it interesting and knowing
what’s going on comes in useful sometimes. But there is one part of this rule
which is really, really simple – don’t pass anything on.  That’s it. Gossip stops with you.  If you listen but don’t pass it along or
offer an opinion you’ll be seen as ‘one
of us’
rather than a party pooper. 
You don’t have to be seen disapproving – merely don’t pass anything
along.

“THERE IS
ONE PART OF THIS RULE WHICH IS REALLY, REALLY SIMPLE – DON’T PASS ANYTHING ON”.

Gossiping
is the occupation of idle minds – those who haven’t got enough work to do.  It is also the domain of workers who have
mindless jobs to do – jobs they can do without thinking and thus have to occupy
themselves with inane chatter, tittle-tattle, rumor, lies and malicious
stories.  Trouble is that if you don’t
join in you can be seen as severe or stuck up. 
You have to look as if you gossip without doing it.  Don’t go getting all hoity-toity and telling everyone how silly they are doing it.
With
most things discretion is the key word. 
Don’t be seen disapproving – just don’t do it and keep that to yourself.
 (Excerpts from THE RULES OF WORK by Richard Templer Read “How to stop Bitching”
from The Rules tomorrow on Asabeafrika)

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