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Straight talking people are just rude?

(109 Posts)
triggeredhappy Sat 21-Apr-18 12:25:17

I know a few people who pride themselves for being direct or "straight talkers", they like to "tell it how it is", but many of them are not well liked. Obviously, they say they don't care about that. I think they can be quite rude and abrupt.
One colleague gets lots of complaints because of the way she speaks to people. But to be fair she is quite good at her job in the way that she gets what she wants, but people do the work begrudgingly. She has since left and there is talk of her coming back to do a maternity cover, everyone is terrified!
Personally, I'm only direct when I need to be, most of the time, I think diplomacy is more effective in the long run when working with people? Or do I risk being a bit of a doormat? People don't drop everything to do what I want but I think I have a better relationship with people?
What do others think?

DuchyDuke Sat 21-Apr-18 12:29:01

The ones who will be earmarked for progression are the diplomats who get things done while building great relationships. ‘Straight talkers’ are the tool they use to get things done but by promotion time the latter will always he overlooked in favour of the relationship builders. It’s how business works.

Fiera Sat 21-Apr-18 12:29:52

I actually really like 'straight up' people who say exactly what they mean and mean exactly what they say.
Theres a difference between being direct and being rude.
I think beating around the bush and wasting peoples time is rude but i guess people do that to mind peoples feelings and seem 'polite'

Straight talk back, OP. She will probably appreciate it

Redcrayons Sat 21-Apr-18 12:35:22

I quite like people who are straight talking, you always know where you stand with them.
However, It's a fine line between straight talking and being a massive arsehole.

Socksey Sat 21-Apr-18 12:38:12

It's possible to be straight talking and direct without being rude. People IMO often use it as an excuse finding rude. You can be direct and diplomatic.... it's a case of learning when to keep your mouth shut and when to express your opinion while respecting the opinions of others...

Socksey Sat 21-Apr-18 12:38:53

For being rude .... not finding rude .... phone changing things .... sorry

CigarsofthePharoahs Sat 21-Apr-18 12:43:32

Straight talking is all very well, but I've met plenty of people who use it as an excuse to be rude and cruel. There are some things that don't need to be said.
No, it isn't straight talking to tell me I have a massive zit on my face. I know, and I don't need it pointing out. Or to tell me loudly that you think an item of my clothing makes me look old.
However, in a work environment then it's the managers job to be straight with their staff so everyone knows what they're meant to be doing. You're there to do a job you're paid for, and if you're not doing it right or are being lazy then the manager needs to say so.

triggeredhappy Sat 21-Apr-18 12:44:59

Ah ok socksey. This colleague in particular does not distinguish situations. She is direct all of the time. No matter who she is speaking to.
Good in the way that you always knew what she meant and it's the truth! So at least when it's a compliment, it's genuine!

PrimalLass Sat 21-Apr-18 12:45:28

I have an issue with colleagues like this at the moment. Ok it is good to be honest but quite often the ones who dish it out don't like getting it back. I'm sick of worrying if I am going to get a random talking to.

triggeredhappy Sat 21-Apr-18 12:46:03

Yes Cigars, she would definitely point out zits!

PaintedHorizons Sat 21-Apr-18 12:46:06

Being direct and being rude are different as are being polite and being passive aggressive.

Clarity is important and building realtionships is crucial in business but neither of these things equates with rudeness.

"I wonder if you'd mind awfully, if it's not too much trouble that is, and I really don't mind if you are too busy with more important things, but it is rather urgent, so if you could I'd be sooooo grateful if you were able to get the work in on time this week?"

AaronPurrSir Sat 21-Apr-18 12:46:40

Straight talk back, OP. She will probably appreciate it

On the contrary, I find a lot of these straight talking people can dish it out, but absolutely cannot take it.

Witchend Sat 21-Apr-18 12:49:07

I know straight talkers who are not rude, they do tell you straight, but in a way that is constructive.

I would say though that those people would not describe themselves as straight talking. They also are happy to listen to your feedback and act on it.

Those I know that do describe themselves that way are more often than not rude, and seem to use it as an excuse to feel they don't need to consider others' feelings.
They also are far more inclined to get angry/upset if anyone tells them anything that they would say without a blink.

Dahlietta Sat 21-Apr-18 12:49:10

I think there's a difference between people who are 'straight talking' and people who 'pride themselves on being straight talking'. The latter are almost always obnoxious, whereas with the former, I suppose it depends very much on what they think. If they think sensible, not unpleasant things and just say them, then I can be onboard with that. If they think horrible things and think it's appropriate to just say them, they're likely to be obnoxious too.

NewYearNewMe18 Sat 21-Apr-18 12:49:30

I'd rather have someone who doesn't beat around the bush.. Being direct isn't necessarily rude. I've lost count of the number of waffle laden meetings I've left without a single scoobie doo what it was all about, no clarity, no direction, no point at all. Just wiffle waffle piffle.

lanbury Sat 21-Apr-18 12:49:59

There's a big difference between being honest and assertive to arrogant and bullying. I would rather people were "straight talkers" in an honest, to the point way, because I seriously hate it when you're left having to second guess with weird mind games like you're meant to be telepathic.

jamoncrumpets Sat 21-Apr-18 12:51:48

I think a lot of people cover themselves for saying nasty shit by saying they're just being 'straight up'. I think I'm pretty 'straight up' myself, but not at the expense of other people's feelings.

Catsrawesome Sat 21-Apr-18 12:51:50

There is a difference between being straight talking and just saying careless and rude remarks. I rather someone be honest and direct ( in a kind and respectful manner ) then someone who says one thing and thinks other. You might think your bs is being “ polite” but when people are mislead by it and believe you are going to do something you never intended too. It’s beyond rude, it’s mean. It’s a very big problem in British culture, you never know how genuine someone is being with you. I find it very hard to trust people over here because of it.

triggeredhappy Sat 21-Apr-18 12:55:38

I've thought of some examples from the colleague:

Someone was looking for another colleague who happens to be the only black person in the office. She said "he's over there, you can't miss him"

I was pregnant and was hungry all the time, whenever I ate junk food blush, She said "you're going to get so fat eating like that"

She did some of my role when I was on maternity leave, when I came back she said she was better at the job than I was and should be paid what I get paid.

Rude or just "telling it like it is"?

SilverBirchTree Sat 21-Apr-18 12:58:42

Personally, id much rather work with people who say what they mean. I like to know where I stand.

If it’s a work thing I don’t tend to get offended.

If it’s a social relationship then yes I suppose I would prefer more tact.

crunchymint Sat 21-Apr-18 13:01:27

What about adults with autism? I have an autistic friend who is straight talking, but never ever mean. I really like her. You always know exactly where you stand with her.

Spudlet Sat 21-Apr-18 13:02:39

She doesn't sound so much direct as bloody rude. There is a difference!

MozzchopsThirty Sat 21-Apr-18 13:02:49

I'm a straight talker
Some people love it, others not so much.

I don't try to be rude but I'm honest

I am always happy to apologise if I upset people, because that's never my intention

lynzpynz Sat 21-Apr-18 13:05:04

I’m a straight talker, and I loathe people who say they are too when they are in fact obnoxious rude gits! As a true straight talker I wouldnt think twice in saying to her “wow that’s a bit personal, no need for that come on now etc.” If she said those kind of things to my more hesitant colleagues.

I have a lot of friends and love my colleagues too, would never dream of being so mean to them! They say they value my honesty, openness and my sensitivity importantly. This woman sounds a plain mean bully!

The colleagues who are all saying they are worried - if she comes back agree you will support each other and whilst one of you doesnt necessarily feel confident enough to tackle her bluntly do call out her behaviour every time it crosses the line. Don’t need to be aggressive, can make it light and just say “lay off X come on now play nice” or “ooooh put your claws back in thanks”. Look after your colleagues and make sure they look after you. Don’t let the little things slide, it just validates to her that she won’t get called for the big things.

If sounds like HR is not taking their employees concerns seriously, don’t let them shirk their responsibilities - it’s their job to speak to her if it’s affecting others mental well-being. Report report report.

Really hope you all can avoid her return but if not good luck OP and hope you can put her in her place!

Ohdearyme2018 Sat 21-Apr-18 13:10:06

I find straight talking people refreshing.

There are some complete wimps in my office who cannot deal with being told they have done a bad job, made a mistake or are wrong - it’s pathetic

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