Hey guys, I wanted to know what you all thought about how to manage political discussions in the office. I sit on a trading desk where people are very free about expressing their opinions and enjoy taking a political stance. I enjoy the lively and engaging discussions, though I’m wondering about my ideal level of preparation in these conversations. First off, I’ve only been here for a few weeks for my internship – I’m not a full-time, long-term employee like some of the others. I’ve also generally been cautious about discussing politics in the workplace because I don’t necessarily want to alienate anyone, and because I’ve always been told to be careful about talking about potentially controversial matters like politics and religion in the workplace. However, sometimes these guys want to loop me in and hear what I think, and I feel that if I try to tactfully analyze both sides of an issues and “play it safe,” people really aren’t looking for some philosophical waxing – I feel like they just want to hear me take a stance, however brash it may be, and move on. Can anyone advise on how to best handle situations like this? As you all know, I’m not typically one to hesitate expressing my opinions, but am not used to politically-charged banter in the workplace.
the best way to resolve these discussions is to throw the first punch. another good sign of dominance is to smudge the other persons screen - some people can’t handle it.
trading desk eh…all you need to know is that o is the antichrist turning america into cuba
in all honesty, the worst thing to say is nothing at all. no one likes a downer.
Just agree with whatever their opinion is? May be hard to keep you from contradicting yourself, though.
Agree with your boss, and crush his/her enemies with the power of your logic. That always works pretty well, unless your boss is on the chopping block. As for your opinions, they become valuable as your net worth rises. And there’s always a nice place for them in your memoirs. Yes, I’m feeling cynical today.
As long as you are not a raging homosexual who wants to legalize gay marriage, I think they will be more than okay with you sharing your political views. Oh and don’t be too cocky… well not until you get a permanent position…
I only discuss politics with those who have no influence on my bonus. Same thing for religion.
Talk about how much you hate Barney Frank. Unless you actually like him in which case you should probably find a new career.
" how about that Nancy Pelosi eh " is always good for a chuckle
talking about weiner should be safe
ZeroBonus Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > As long as you are not a raging homosexual who > wants to legalize gay marriage, I think they will > be more than okay with you sharing your political > views. I hope you’re kidding and if not, that someone tells you that even the most moronic Americans are realizing that objecting to gay marriage is stupid and indefensible.
Numi, your coming from research and PE right. So I could see your whole analytical, play safe, don’t alienate anyone attitude. Welcome to the trade floor, where people are a lot more loud and opinionated. Your absolutely correct in that people want to just hear a view and see you have conviction. Sitting on a trade floor staring at a screen all day makes people very ticked and you need to release energy and humour somehow to save face. Politics come in as a way to blow off steam and make jokes, most traders usually will lean to the right simply based on the same notion that traders are performance focused. I agree with hating on Barney Frank. I sure as heck hope you don’t support the ridiculous new CFTC rules and waste of time that Dodd-Frank has caused over the last year. Truly though no one wants you to “play it safe”, that ain’t for the trade floor. I really disagree with people on here about that “politics and relegious” views could affect your bonus in trading. It’s really hard for anything outside of P&L to effect your bonus, or maybe outlashing at a co-worker/client.
If you can make a fair point and crack a decent joke at the same time, you’re golden.
Just read the esoteric sections of the Economist and comment on what’s going on with Malaysian and Tutsi tribal politics. You’re less likely to encounter a strong opposing view if you stick to things people know nothing about.
brain_wash_your_face Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > Just read the esoteric sections of the Economist > and comment on what’s going on with Malaysian and > Tutsi tribal politics. You’re less likely to > encounter a strong opposing view if you stick to > things people know nothing about. I better not hear you bad mouthing Theodore Simburudari.