Secret Information

Guard against the temptation to correct rumors or divulge information when you’ve been
entrusted with confidential information. For example, assume you’re privy to secret
information about a layoff or reorganization and someone asks you if it’s true. Instead
of betraying confidences or correcting semi-accurate information, be honest about your
predicament by saying something such as, “I can appreciate how hard it is to stay focused
with this kind of uncertainty. I’m just not free to talk about this at this time.”

So what?

This augments your credibility by demonstrating that you can be trusted with
confidential information. Moreover, you’ve allowed yourself some “wiggle room” to
provide more information in the future. It also reveals that you’re managing on a formal
basis rather than managing informally by responding to innuendo.