In a recent survey conducted by Express Employment Professionals-Harris Poll, it was found that many Canadian job seekers feel uncomfortable discussing certain topics at work. Despite the increasingly casual nature of company culture, 43% of job seekers don’t feel like they can be themselves in the workplace. Additionally, 73% believe that employees are discouraged from discussing specific topics.

The top three subjects that job seekers feel they have to avoid discussing at work are religion, salary/wages, and politics. However, job seekers are more comfortable discussing topics such as family, diversity equity and inclusion (DEI), physical health, and mental health. Interestingly, while traditional topics like salary/wages, religion, and politics are considered taboo, many job seekers are actually comfortable discussing them.

The survey also revealed that workplace etiquette can be confusing for many job seekers, with 60% feeling unsure about what is considered acceptable behavior due to changing norms. Despite this uncertainty, the majority of job seekers prefer to keep their home life separate from their work life.

Encouraging authenticity in the workplace is crucial, with 72% of hiring managers prioritizing the importance of employees being able to bring their whole selves to work. However, there is room for improvement, as only around one-third of hiring managers place a significant emphasis on promoting positive mental health and authenticity.

Discouraging open communication in the workplace may inadvertently silence employees and hinder their ability to contribute to the company. More than half of hiring managers reported that topics like salary/wages, religion, politics, physical and mental health, DEI, and family are discouraged from discussion.

Bill Stoller, CEO of Express Employment International, emphasized the importance of creating a safe space for all employees, where personal differences are respected. He highlighted the need for a healthy company culture that is inclusive and supportive.

The survey methodology included online surveys conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of Express Employment Professionals, with responses from Canadian hiring decision-makers and adults ages 18 and older. The findings shed light on the challenges and dynamics of workplace communication and authenticity.

Overall, the survey results indicate that while there has been progress in creating more relaxed work environments, there is still work to be done in fostering open communication, promoting authenticity, and creating a culture of inclusivity and support in the workplace.