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How to start a fight in your PR office

Sometimes discussions can get out of hand in this office, and end up in shouting matches. People have been known to storm off in tears (not me of course, I just get stuff caught in my eye), and I am sure the bloke sitting next to me has been tempted to throw a punch on a few occasions – either that or it is the heat of the argument that is making him roll up his sleeves.

So here are some subjects to avoid if you want to work in harmony. If you fancy a bit of drama, then I suggest you start at number one and work your way down, but not on the same day perhaps.

1. Politics. Boy, the election results really got my office going. Kudos to the intern who dared to admit she voted Ukip. Not sure she'll get that permanent contract now though!

2. Money. Some people are richer than others, and some other people get jealous. I myself am thrilled that my boss can afford to drive a Porsche. One brilliant way to start a fight, I discovered the other day, is to ask someone how much their partner earns.

One obtuse bloke asked his colleague if she really needs to work, while trying to find out how much her husband earns in the city. Wrong on so many levels! My thick colleague deserved the bolllocking he received.

3. Sexism. See above, and there are plenty of other examples of throw-away remarks that can offend either the men, or the women, in the office. Score double points if you manage to upset everyone. You might like to ask whether one gender is naturally suited to different skills, from cooking to DIY. And I do hate to be sexist about this, but it is usually women who win these arguments.

4. Fat issues. Fat is now a four-letter word – talking about someone being overweight in a disparaging way is a one-way ticket to being hated. Do you really want to be the Katie Hopkins of the office?

5. Holidays. If you work for a company where you can choose to take holidays whenever you like, lucky you. In smaller places, like my outfit, we have to make sure our vacations don’t clash, and the fights over who deserves to get the premium weeks in July and August can get quite nasty. I, myself, think parents should get priority booking, although sometimes I wonder why I put myself through the hell that is family holidays.

And don’t even think about mentioning religion. ..

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