Last Updated Nov 13, 2007 12:00 PM EST
Avoid office gossip. Participation in gossip is usually the fastest entry point into office politics -- usually the person who is letting you in on the latest news is consciously or subconsciously trying to align you with their point of view, or negatively dispose you towards their enemies. Gossip is very often a two-edged sword: "Whoever gossips to you will someday gossip about you," so the Spanish proverb goes. Gossip can also unfairly poison your opinions of your colleagues and influence your judgement if you have to make decisions that affect them.The writing here is a little shaky, but the points are sound: By understanding the motivations behind office politics, you can attune yourself to it and subsequently avoid it. Got an office-politics horror story to share? You know where: the Comments! Photo by davidcrow.