RE: OT: Profanity in the workplace

Subject: RE: OT: Profanity in the workplace
From: "Pinkham, Jim" <Jim -dot- Pinkham -at- voith -dot- com>
To: "Gene Kim-Eng" <techwr -at- genek -dot- com>, <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 3 Mar 2010 14:54:47 -0600

Gene sums things up well. It's about professionalism and respect for
others. I, too, would be offended by the instance Kat cited, and both
profanity and swearing would not be appreciated. Of course, we're all
adults, and we've heard all manner of coarse and sometimes vicious
speech. But there is a lot of verbal detritus that a good many people
would rather not have littering their work environment. I'm reminded of
the old saying, something to the effect of, "Profanity is the feeble
attempt of an ignorant mind to express itself forcibly." Strong,
hyperbolic words, of course, but with some kernel of truth in them.

That said, the best approach to the situation has a lot to do with
attitude -- both yours and your co-workers'. I'm not about to grumble
and object every time a co-worker lets slip a colorful phrase, and
sometimes I'll laugh just as long and loudly as anyone at the humor
embedded in words I'd prefer not to have to hear. In fact, I can
probably count on one hand the times I've felt the need to ask a
co-worker to be more considerate in this regard over the years. At the
same time, there are occasions when it's OK to graciously let someone
know that habitual vulgar language is offensive. And, as Gene notes, if
it's simply a matter of extricating yourself gracefully from a
conversation, that may often be the way to go.

Jim

-----Original Message-----
From: techwr-l-bounces+jim -dot- pinkham=voith -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
[mailto:techwr-l-bounces+jim -dot- pinkham=voith -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On
Behalf Of Gene Kim-Eng
Sent: Wednesday, March 03, 2010 1:49 PM
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: RE: OT: Profanity in the workplace

I don't consider good manners "erring."

Profane language in the workplace would be within reason if the office
was suddenly hit by a 6.0 temblor or a company shutdown and mass layoff
was unexpectedly announced. In these cases I might utter something out
of character myself. Otherwise, I would consider it unprofessional
conduct. If the utterer reported to me, I'd take him/her aside and
privately counsel against using language that reflects badly on the
person using it and if directed against persons who might take offense
could potentially subject the company to "hostile workplace" complaints.
Otherwise I would probably just make an effort to extricate myself from
the conversation as gracefully as possible.

Gene Kim-Eng

------- Original Message -------
On 3/3/2010 7:06 PM Kat Kuvinka wrote:
Is it not a big deal in an office environment? Or should we always err
on the side of manners?
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References:
RE: OT: Profanity in the workplace: From: Gene Kim-Eng

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