Overcoming Negative Sarcasm at Your Office


Okay, continuing with our course about how to build a healthy work culture we’re talking about removing what I call culture killers. In the last video we talked about the culture killer of personality ignorance. Today I wanna talk about the second culture killer in any organization, negative sarcasm.

There’s a big difference between wit and sarcasm. Wit is when you make a keen observation and then you express that observation in a clever way. Sort of like a joke about the dyslexic agnostic that laid awake at night wondering if there really is a dog. Negative sarcasm on the other hand is hostility towards an individual that’s disguised as a joke. It’s making an unnecessary comment that makes someone feel uncomfortable or pushes them to do something.
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Now here’s some things that we all know about negative sarcasm in the office. One, it grows. Somebody makes a snarky remark and then somebody else makes a snarky remark and now who can make the better snarky remark and it never stops until somebody goes over the top and says something they really shouldn’t say. We know this is true.

The second thing about negative sarcasm is it distracts. Rather than actually focusing on your job, which you’re there to do, now we spend all day going back and forth giving snarky remarks.

Finally, it makes your environment less safe. If I go into the office and there’s a lot of sarcasm at some point in time I know that I’m going to be the brunt of the joke. Negative sarcasm is a culture killer. So how do we get rid of this negative culture killer in an organization?

The first step is to have great communication in your office. Sometimes people feel like their opinion can’t be heard and so they resort to making a joke to get something that’s important to them out in the open. If your office has regular meetings where people are able to express their concerns and opinions, if there’s an open door policy where you can talk to the boss if you need to then there really is no excuse for having sarcasm in the office.

The second step is basically make your office a sarcasm free zone. No sarcasm in this office. It’s one of those things where you have three strikes. The first time you get a warning. The second time you get written up and the third time, you gone. Organizations without negative sarcasm create much healthier environments for every team member in the organization.

In the next video we’re gonna talk about the third culture killer in any organization, whining. Please click the subscribe button if you’d like to get more videos like this on how to grow your business. Thanks for watching.[/read]

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