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Workplace without hate

bnayazil profile image Bnaya Zilberfarb ・2 min read

TL;DR the reason why there is no hate between any of the workers in my current workplace is we avoid gossip.

I guess the best known part of the bible (the old testament) is its' stories, but the most important part of the bible and in Judaism is Halacha (Jewish law). And one of the most important rules of the Halacha (in my opinion) is the rule forbidding slander and gossip.

what it means in a nutshell, is that a person should not say, imply, signal, or even listen to a bad thing told about another person (even if the bad thing is true, yes it's crazy, I know). Now that I describe what slander is it's pretty obvious why, if everyone is avoiding slander, there is no hate. By not letting any slander or gossip enter the workplace, by not repeating even the details of an incident between 2 co-workes, you're keeping it from evolving and spreading.

How can we achieve it? Honestly, I'm not an expert and my experience is short, but I will be happy to share my own experience from my current workplace. I started working in my current workplace almost 3 years ago.
I made this rule for myself, that any time I would hear slander I say "this is a slander, I'm not accepting what you just said". Even though hearing it might be annoying or even make me somewhat an annoying person in the office, I knew it required gentleness and also an understanding of my co-workers, for me to know when I can say it and to whom and after a while people got familiar with it and even further embraced it.

Today, after almost 3 years I certainly feel the effect this behavior had on our workplace and the unexpected happened when my CEO told me he started spreading this rule of no gossip and slander to his daughters and their friends in school.

After hearing about this article by chance, my previous CTO wanted to share his point of view on the matter:

My name is Snir David and I have been Bnaya’s manager at the said company for several years. One of the most vivid memories I have from my time as Bnaya’s manger is his rule of no gossip.

What started as a funny rule for us, mostly enforced by Bnaya alone, quickly became an office habit. First as a joke, when someone spread gossip or slander around when Bnaya wasn’t present, we repeated Bnaya’s phrase.

From there, the road to have much less gossip and slander than is usual in an office environment was short. This, in my opinion, was one of the cultural building blocks of the company that paid high dividends down the road. Thank you, Bnaya.

Discussion

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ornataweaver profile image
Ornataweaver

Hatred is a crucial part of life.

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bnayazil profile image
Bnaya Zilberfarb Author

Hatred is crucial where it's needed, I believe most of the time it's not the case.

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ornataweaver profile image
Ornataweaver

A hatful life is a wasted one. But I see people have become weak and careless. And there is too much hate by some weak people, who don't call it hate, and they feel entitled to everything.

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bnayazil profile image
Bnaya Zilberfarb Author

I'm not sure I follow...

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ornataweaver profile image
Ornataweaver

There are lots of hateful people who call themselves oppressed, and they believe it's the duty of others to fight for them.

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bnayazil profile image
Bnaya Zilberfarb Author

It's not perfect but as I said if you won't even listen to gossip and slander you are not letting those people spread their hates.

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phlash909 profile image
Phil Ashby

Glad to hear this approach is working for your team and colleagues :)

Is there any corresponding positive statement/message, ie: what /can/ people talk about that might help them deal with resentment or feeling offended etc.?

Genuinely curious (having never tried this): do you ever find that people just take the slander outside the office (eg: to social media)?

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bnayazil profile image
Bnaya Zilberfarb Author

Is there any corresponding positive statement/message, ie: what /can/ people talk about that might help them deal with resentment or feeling offended, etc.?

This is an interesting question, I would separate it to two, preventing offending behavior which I initially describe my way by avoiding myself from gossip and slander, and treatment which might be a very personal matter, for some people time can do the trick for others direct communication.

If you are talking about a case where you are not directly involved I believe personally avoiding slander is still helping as I describe, avoiding slander spread like the gossip itself.

Genuinely curious (having never tried this): do you ever find that people just take the slander outside the office (eg: to social media)?

I didn't met it in the workspace itself but I can see it all the time in the social media, I heard it's very common in school kids, I think the social media it's just a property of the root problem and we better deal with the root, if someone avoiding slander in person he becomes sensitive to it and will avoid it in social media as well.

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jeikabu profile image
jeikabu

"Don't tolerate brilliant jerks" applies. The preventative approach perhaps formalized in the "no assholes" hiring policy.