Don't Stifle War Talk At Work

By John S. McClenahen Yes, you should let employees talk openly at work about their interest and concerns about the war in Iraq, advises the Herman Group, a Greensboro, N.C.-based management consulting firm that focuses on workplace issues. "This is an emotional issue for people," says Joyce Gioia, president of the firm. "If workers are not permitted to learn about events and discuss their feelings, they will feel anger at being deprived of the freedom of conversation." The Herman Group recommends that, when appropriate and safe, companies even allow their employees to listen to radio reports or spend a few minutes watching news on television. "While there are some people who may become obsessed with getting every little detail, most employees will still focus most of their attention on work," says Gioia.

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