- Employees younger than 35 make a distinction between discussing politics at the office and discussing them on their social media accounts during work hours, a survey from Clutch revealed. The study found that 45% of younger workers, 18-34, believe their organization should not "clarify whether employees can use their social media to express political views while working." Only 29% agree companies should regulate political talk on social media.
- Clutch said this younger demographic also believes in the importance of working for an organization that shares their political views; values the separation between work and personal life; is more likely to use social media.
- Twenty-seven percent of survey respondents said companies should have a political expression policy.
A little more than one year ago, nearly three-quarters of workers said heated political arguments in the workplace stressed them out, according to a Randstad US survey. This doesn't mean all employees are game for their organizations to disapprove of political talk, however. Only 20% of workers in an Indeed survey from 2018 said they want more censure of political discussions; 54% are content with the current level of political discourse and 10% think too much speech is being censored.
Organizations may want to grapple with this question of work and politics, especially as the 2020 presidential election draws near. Some workers have expressed interest in working for employers that support political issues important to them, but that was true of only a quarter of respondents in a previous Clutch survey. In fact, 40% of respondents said company leaders should not take a political stand on issues related to their industry. Still, workers have expressed a growing interest in corporate social responsibility, and CSR initiatives can make for powerful recruiting tools, as one HR leader pointed out.
In light of such research, employers may want to develop a culture of mutual respect and professionalism around politics and other contested issues. Google, for example, is responding to this issue with community guidelines on political discussions in the workplace in an effort to bring down tension levels.