Talking about politics is a fast way to turn a room cold. However, there are times when discussing politics is appropriate. In the office is not one of them. If you find that a lot of the conversations are revolving around it, you may want to work toward getting it to stop. The workplace is not an area you can avoid. It needs to be a place that you feel comfortable. Change the environment if you can or learn to adapt.
One of the best things that you can do is to remain calm. It can be hard to deal with differing views, but letting things escalate can be more damaging. Once a simple conversation becomes an argument, it is hard to go back. Remaining calm or walking away is the best way to keep the vibe you want to work in. When things start getting too serious and political, stay calm and excuse yourself. This may not stop the talk, but it will keep you out of it. Stay in control of what you can, which is yourself and who you associate with.
Depending on where you work, there could be rules prohibiting talking about topics such as politics. Look into this, it could be a straightforward way of ending these types of discussions. These are the same type of rules that prohibit religious talk. There is no need to try and turn those in that are breaking this rule. That is not going to help the vibe of the office. A reminder that if overheard, they could get some disciplinary action could help. It will get the point across while maintaining relationships. Rules are here to create an environment that employees want to be in and perform their jobs well.
Decline to engage is a great way not to hear or speak politics. Getting hooked into a conversation that you know could get out of hand will affect how you feel towards those involved. Keep your work relationships professional by leaving conversations that begin to go into a topic that should not be in the workplace. It will only take declining a few times for those you work with to get the hint that those discussions are not welcome. Instead, engage in fun conversations or maybe just work topics. Don’t let your declining make you unapproachable. Keep up the friendly exchanges with those in the office.
There are times that you may not be able to avoid inevitable conversations. If you get stuck in a discussion about politics or any other current events that could turn uncomfortable, stick to the facts. There is no one forcing you to share your opinions. A lot of times, the one who starts the conversation is wanting to share their thoughts. A good idea would be to listen and acknowledge their opinion. You do not need to agree or disagree with them.
Correct the vibe in the office by shutting down the political talk.