GMAT : Analysis of An Issue

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An Issue

9. Employees should keep their private lives and personal activities as separate as possible from the workplace.


Discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the opinion stated above. Support your views with reasons and / or examples from your own experience, observations or reading.


Should employees leave their personal lives entirely behind them when they enter the workplace as the speaker suggests here? While I agree that employees should not allow their personal lives to interfere with their jobs, the speaker fails to consider that integrating personal life with work can foster a workplace ambiance that helps everyone do a better job thereby promoting success for the organization.

Engaging co-workers in occasional conversation about personal interests and activities can help build collegiality among co-workers that adds to their sense of common purpose on the job. Managers would be well advised to participate in and perhaps even plan the sharing of personal information as a leadership tool as well as a morale booster. An employee feels valued when the boss takes time to ask about the employee's family or recent vacation. The employee in turn is likely to be more loyal to and cooperative with the boss. Company sponsored social events - picnics, parties, excursions and so forth - also help to produce greater cohesiveness in an organization by providing opportunities for employees to bond with one another in ways that translate into better working relationships.

Admittedly, employees should guard against allowing their personal life to impinge upon their job performance or intrude on co-workers. Excessive chatting about non- business topics, frequent personal telephone calls and the like are always distracting. And romances between co-workers are best kept confidential, at least to the extent they disrupt work or demoralize or offend other employees. By the same token, however, employees who are too aloof - sharing nothing personal with others - may be resented by co-workers who perceive them as arrogant, unfriendly or uncooperative. The ill-will and lack of communication that is likely to result may ultimately harm the organization.

In the final analysis, employees should strike a careful balance when they mix their personal lives with their jobs. Although there are some circumstances in which bringing one's personal life to the job may be counterproductive, for many reasons it is a good idea to inject small doses of personal life into the work place.

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