An undiscussable is a work-related topic that people don’t address with those who can do something about it. It isn’t that people don’t talk about undiscussables. They talk about them frequently - in the hallways and parking lots, the lunchroom and across the cubicles. But it isn’t with the person or the people most often associated with the issues. They are the topics people come out of a meeting and share with one another privately that should have been part of the agenda.
Undiscussables are more than just sensitive topics; they are the “secrets everyone knows” and they can be incredibly disruptive to trust in relationships and the whole process of getting work done.
Some of the most common topics are how people feel treated by their bosses, why disruptive/lazy people aren’t managed or fired, whether their peers are pulling their weight, tensions around diversity, tensions around working styles, compensation — all kinds of stuff that people are afraid to speak about.