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3 Things to Never Do at Work, According to an HR Professional with 10 Years' Worth of Experience Perhaps set a "time-to-go" alarm at work events.

By Alyshia Hull

Key Takeaways

  • Valerie Rodriguez, a human-resources director, says there are three things she never does in the workplace.
  • She says oversharing at work can be harmful because it allows people to make decisions for you.
  • Sticking around too long at company functions can also end negatively, she says.
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Fanatic Studio / Gary Waters via Business Insider
Valerie Rodriguez suggests hanging out at company functions for only an hour or two.

This article originally appeared on Business Insider.

This as-told-to essay is based on a conversation with Valerie Rodriguez, a 31-year-old human resources director in New Jersey. It has been edited for length and clarity.

I've worked in HR for 10 years. Specifically, I work with senior leaders to ensure all sorts of HR compliance is in place. I do it all: coaching leaders, driving engagement, boosting team morale, and more.

When it comes to HR, people are usually curious about how to stand out at work. To that, I'd say go above and beyond, find ways to be innovative, and come to the table with solutions, not just problems. But beyond what you should do, there are also things you shouldn't.

After working in HR for 10 years, here are three things I'd never do in the workplace.

1. Don't overshare

The main point I preach is not to overshare at work. It's easy to become comfortable with your colleagues. After all, you spend eight hours a day with them, if not more. Even for remote workers, depending on the role, there's still a significant connection to coworkers, but it's important to remember they aren't your automatic friends.

Oversharing at work often does more harm than good because it allows people to make assumptions or decisions for you; even if it does come from a caring place, it's not a good idea.

For example, not thinking much of it, I once told a coworker about issues I was having with my car. Then, a couple of months later, an opportunity arose for me to move into a larger scope of work, requiring me to drive to different locations.

When my manager sat down with me, he mentioned he had heard about my car issues and expressed concern about me getting "stuck." As a result, the job opportunity wasn't given to me. I was so bummed out, and I felt burned. It made me realize I shouldn't share things in my personal life with those I work with, as it gives people the opportunity to weigh in and make decisions for me.

2. Don't be humble

I've learned not to be too humble when it comes to the workplace. I don't mean anyone should be cocky, think they're better than everyone else, or be a jerk; that won't get you very far, either. I believe you can be kind and empathetic, but at the same time, you can't let people step all over you, and you shouldn't put yourself last in comparison to others.

In my HR role, I've noticed that successful people tend to be very direct about their accomplishments and more vocal, whereas super-humble individuals tend not to talk about their achievements or advocate for themselves as much.

As a result, it's easier for them to get passed up for promotions and for them to fade into the background. I myself was once a big believer that my work would speak for itself, but I've since learned that if you don't advocate for yourself, no one else will.

3. Don't stick around too long at parties

As someone who's worked in HR, I've played a role in organizing events where I've had to stay to the end or just pop in when I can.

As a result, I've seen more negative things come out of sticking around too long at company functions than positive ones. Sometimes, it's the alcohol — people will start drinking, and it just goes too far.

Other times, people will be very much sober but make poor decisions because they're around their coworkers but in a different setting than the office. When they come into the office the next day, there are rumors flying. I myself like to play it on the safe side, and I won't usually stick around for more than an hour or two unless I have to.

Here's the thing: Even if you're fine and you don't engage in anything bad, if you see something, chances are HR or legal are going to come knocking on your door.

I say, swing by, spend some time at the party, and show your face, but hanging around longer than a couple of hours doesn't always serve a good purpose.

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