Why Political Talk Is Causing Problems at Work
Life and Leisure

Why Political Talk Is Causing Problems at Work

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The election may have ended months ago, but American workers are still talking politics at the office, and it’s stressing them out.

A new survey from the American Psychological Association finds that more than half of Americans say they’ve talked about politics at work. For 40 percent of American workers, such discussions have created issues with their performance, including reduced productivity, poorer quality of work or difficulty getting work done. That’s up from 27 percent of workers who said before election that political talk was causing a negative outcome.

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More than a quarter of those surveyed said they felt tense or stressed out because of political discussions at work, up from 17 percent before the election. More than 20 percent said that political talk was making them feel cynical and negative during the workday.

“Employers might prefer to keep political talk out of the workplace, but the reality is these often-heated discussions have intensified since the election, posing a threat to employee well-being and business performance.”

Nearly a third of workers said that they had seen coworkers argue over politics, and 15 percent said that they’d personally been in a political argument at work. Nearly a quarter of workers said they avoided some coworkers because of their political views.

Workers who identified as liberals were more likely than others to report feeling tense or stressed because of political discussions in the workplace.