Office Politics

Office Tips how to tell Coworkers they Talk too much



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Communicating in the office effectively is extremely important especially if someone is effecting the ability of others in the office to get work done. Far too often there are individuals in the workplace that can become counterproductive for the company because of their actions. These people are constantly talking too much, visiting with others too frequently, and making it difficult for the rest of the office to concentrate on the functions of their own jobs.  These over talking coworkers while friendly may create a productivity black hole that seems impossible to escape at times.  Learning to communicate effectively with these coworkers can get them to back off a bit without creating further conflict in the process.

UNDERSTAND THE OFFENDER
One of the first steps in resolving issues with someone that talks too much is to better understand that person in general.  There is a reason why they are able to talk so frequently and still maintain their job in the process.  This could simply be because they lack social interaction in their life and use work as a means of filling that void.  For these people one way of getting them to back off a bit could simply mean hanging out with them.  Maybe this means setting up a day of the week where everyone in the office gets together to grab a few drinks or go bowling.  The resolution to the problem could really be as simple as finding a way for them to meet their social needs outside of work so that they don't have to be so aggressive with it during work.

There are other offenders that have plenty of social interaction, but are simply talking a lot because they are bored.  When someone doesn't have any work to do they are more likely to walk around and talk to others.  They are simply trying to make it through the day like everyone else, unfortunately they don't have the level of work required to help them do that.  For this it is simply a matter of talking to this individual to see what can be done in order to give them greater challenge in their day.  By asking this individual to help out with other work around the office it could either keep them from trying create conversation in the first place or could keep them busy enough that they aren't as likely to continue talking.  It should be a goal to keep this person as occupied as possible in order to keep them away from talking to others.

Some offenders are bored with their work because it poses little challenge to them.  This type of offender may just motivation to do something different.  In a situation where someone is under challenged they should be pushed to try for a promotion.  If they are excited about the potential to move to a more exciting job or to move into a higher paying position there is a good chance that they are going to work a little bit harder throughout the day to show that they are qualified for that position.

EASY FIXES
Some of the easiest fixes are ones that require the offender to spend more time on a project.  A great way to keep someone busy is by giving them control of some project of importance.  This could mean giving them control of a committee such as a party planning committee or a new idea committee.  It could also mean that they are responsible for organizing an office football pool.  By giving them direct responsibility for more things they are likely going to have less time to spend socializing and will need to spend more time working. 

If all else fails, the direct route is always effective.  Letting the offender know that they are hindering productivity by constantly talking will let them know that they need to stop talking so others can work.  This could hurt their feelings a bit at first but once they realize that they are talking just a bit too much it could make a big difference on the morale and productivity of the office.  This approach would be best handled by management who can approach the individual without creating any negativity towards direct coworkers.  The manager is also able to approach it in a different manner and could find a means for solving the issue that would include greater responsibility for the individual.  Sometimes it just takes a manager knowing that someone has a great deal of free time for them to find a way to take advantage of it. 

FINAL THOUGHTS
An individual that talks a lot can be great for morale in the office during the tough times.  They are able to get people talking and turn a situation around quickly.  The problem is that during the good times they become a distraction to work and productivity.  Just their appearance can stress out their coworkers and lower morale.  By using their strengths for the betterment of the company a manager could create a better work culture and increase productivity in the process. 

It is important to realize that many times someone that is talking a lot isn't talking a lot because they can't control themselves, they are doing so because they are truly bored.  When someone is trying to make it through their day, social interaction can be the best means of doing this.  By addressing this issue through giving them more work, many that talk too much are going to either avoid conversation so that they can avoid being given additional work or they will gladly take the work to make it through their day.  Either way the individual is going to spend less time talking and will back off a bit. 

When all else fails, it is important to bring in the manager to remedy the problem.  If the offender can't take the little hints that they are creating an issue or they don't respond to direct comments about it then bringing in management is the only method of resolving the issue.  A manager is going to bring in a different view that the offender is more likely to respond to.  Most people don't want a manager knowing how little they work as that gives them less value to the company.  Just knowing that management is paying attention can often times give them reason to work harder or at least socialize less.  Rarely does a problem of this nature reach management without resolution.

Whatever method is ultimately used it is important to remain calm and respectful.  The morale of the office is incredibly important and it is never good to have a negative situation made worse through aggressive actions in this matter.  Just talk it out, work through available resources, and move on. 

Communicating in the office effectively is extremely important especially if someone is effecting the ability of others in the office to get work done. Far too often there are individuals in the workplace that can become counterproductive for the company because of their actions. These people are constantly talking too much, visiting with others too frequently, and making it difficult for the rest of the office to concentrate on the functions of their own jobs.  These over talking coworkers while friendly may create a productivity black hole that seems impossible to escape at times.  Learning to communicate effectively with these coworkers can get them to back off a bit without creating further conflict in the process.

UNDERSTAND THE OFFENDER
One of the first steps in resolving issues with someone that talks too much is to better understand that person in general.  There is a reason why they are able to talk so frequently and still maintain their job in the process.  This could simply be because they lack social interaction in their life and use work as a means of filling that void.  For these people one way of getting them to back off a bit could simply mean hanging out with them.  Maybe this means setting up a day of the week where everyone in the office gets together to grab a few drinks or go bowling.  The resolution to the problem could really be as simple as finding a way for them to meet their social needs outside of work so that they don't have to be so aggressive with it during work.

There are other offenders that have plenty of social interaction, but are simply talking a lot because they are bored.  When someone doesn't have any work to do they are more likely to walk around and talk to others.  They are simply trying to make it through the day like everyone else, unfortunately they don't have the level of work required to help them do that.  For this it is simply a matter of talking to this individual to see what can be done in order to give them greater challenge in their day.  By asking this individual to help out with other work around the office it could either keep them from trying create conversation in the first place or could keep them busy enough that they aren't as likely to continue talking.  It should be a goal to keep this person as occupied as possible in order to keep them away from talking to others.

Some offenders are bored with their work because it poses little challenge to them.  This type of offender may just motivation to do something different.  In a situation where someone is under challenged they should be pushed to try for a promotion.  If they are excited about the potential to move to a more exciting job or to move into a higher paying position there is a good chance that they are going to work a little bit harder throughout the day to show that they are qualified for that position.

EASY FIXES
Some of the easiest fixes are ones that require the offender to spend more time on a project.  A great way to keep someone busy is by giving them control of some project of importance.  This could mean giving them control of a committee such as a party planning committee or a new idea committee.  It could also mean that they are responsible for organizing an office football pool.  By giving them direct responsibility for more things they are likely going to have less time to spend socializing and will need to spend more time working. 

If all else fails, the direct route is always effective.  Letting the offender know that they are hindering productivity by constantly talking will let them know that they need to stop talking so others can work.  This could hurt their feelings a bit at first but once they realize that they are talking just a bit too much it could make a big difference on the morale and productivity of the office.  This approach would be best handled by management who can approach the individual without creating any negativity towards direct coworkers.  The manager is also able to approach it in a different manner and could find a means for solving the issue that would include greater responsibility for the individual.  Sometimes it just takes a manager knowing that someone has a great deal of free time for them to find a way to take advantage of it. 

FINAL THOUGHTS
An individual that talks a lot can be great for morale in the office during the tough times.  They are able to get people talking and turn a situation around quickly.  The problem is that during the good times they become a distraction to work and productivity.  Just their appearance can stress out their coworkers and lower morale.  By using their strengths for the betterment of the company a manager could create a better work culture and increase productivity in the process. 

It is important to realize that many times someone that is talking a lot isn't talking a lot because they can't control themselves, they are doing so because they are truly bored.  When someone is trying to make it through their day, social interaction can be the best means of doing this.  By addressing this issue through giving them more work, many that talk too much are going to either avoid conversation so that they can avoid being given additional work or they will gladly take the work to make it through their day.  Either way the individual is going to spend less time talking and will back off a bit. 

When all else fails, it is important to bring in the manager to remedy the problem.  If the offender can't take the little hints that they are creating an issue or they don't respond to direct comments about it then bringing in management is the only method of resolving the issue.  A manager is going to bring in a different view that the offender is more likely to respond to.  Most people don't want a manager knowing how little they work as that gives them less value to the company.  Just knowing that management is paying attention can often times give them reason to work harder or at least socialize less.  Rarely does a problem of this nature reach management without resolution.

Whatever method is ultimately used it is important to remain calm and respectful.  The morale of the office is incredibly important and it is never good to have a negative situation made worse through aggressive actions in this matter.  Just talk it out, work through available resources, and move on.

 

More about this author: Wayne Ramsey

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