How to Navigate Controversial Topics in the Workplace

Dennis Relojo-Howell

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These days, the media and social media are filled with controversial topics. From politics to religion to social issues and even celebrity gossip, once-taboo discussions seem to have a prominent place in many people’s lives. For some, these discussions have also moved into the workplace.

For better or for worse, people are far more likely to have controversial conversations or overshare information about their personal lives with co-workers. The reasons for this are unclear, but the result is that some people, whether taking part in the conversations or not, are uncomfortable with it.

If you’re not sure how to handle controversial topics in the workplace, this article and infographic can help. It will tell you a bit about what types of topics are being discussed most, how to be more aware of the effects these conversations have on co-workers, and how to avoid these conversations, if necessary.



By dealing with controversial topics with tact and grace, and prioritising respectful treatment of your co-workers at all times, you’ll help create a workplace culture that upholds the dignity of everyone involved.

Dennis Relojo-Howell is the founder of Psychreg. He writes for the American Psychological Association and has a weekly column for Free Malaysia Today. 

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