5 things to never reveal about yourself at work

How oversharing with co-workers can hurt your career.

by: Robin Madell

When you spend more hours with your colleagues than with your family, it may seem natural that you’ll get to know each other. But before you start divulging details about your personal life in an effort to connect with co-workers, beware. There’s a fine line between appropriate sharing and creating confidences that might kill your career.

Whether you’re a new grad preparing to start your first job or a seasoned industry veteran, the rules are the same when it comes to “TMI” in the workplace. Here are five types of information to never with co-workers:

Negative feelings about your job or colleagues. With social media just a click away, it can be tempting to vent about a bad day at work with your online network. But even if your profile settings are marked as “private,” it’s always a bad judgment call to fume either on Facebook or in person about negative feelings or experiences you have regarding your company, colleagues or job. Even if you think you’re couching terms with discretion, you’re best to save workplace opinions for your family and friends who are not connected with the office.

“You’ve heard the horror stories,” says Marilyn Santiesteban, assistant director of career services at the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University. “My best advice is not to post about your colleagues or any details of your work – especially if it is negative or might be confidential. Employers love positive staff posts, but it takes a while to determine what’s appropriate. If in doubt – don’t!”

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