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The Subtleties of Strategic Swearing | HBR Ideacast


Can swearing actually improve your image in the office?
People were surprised when President Barack Obama said he wanted to know "whose ass to kick" over the Gulf oil spill -- strong words coming from the typically staid leader.

But used in the right context, swearing can actually be useful in conveying emotions that are beyond the reach of ordinary words, says Bob Sutton, a Stanford University professor and author of "The No Asshole Rule."

He explains in this podcast why cursing in the workplace can show confidence, convey a no-nonsense attitude, or even overcome gender stereotypes. But before you go running through the office cursing like a sailor, make sure you are following these guidelines.

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