Upon my prior post on Never Judge a Book By It's Cover, this can go hand in hand. Picture this; you are in the work place with several of your co-workers and you overhear negative comments about another employee. You've never really spoken with this person, but from the comments you have heard you automatically have a bad impression of this person. You begin to dislike this person as well, without even remotely having one conversation with them. Is this wrong? Yes, it very much is. However, we are all human and this happens in several occasions.
Create your opinion and do not base them on someone else's. The reason to this is because we all have different personalities, as well as tolerance levels. What another might find completely annoying and absurd, may be perfectly acceptable to you. Become an observer and make your own judgements towards people and things. Here's what you can do; listen carefully to what other people have to say and do not give your opinion. Simply listen and observe as much as possible. Once you have done that set up a time to meet with the person. Have a conversation and get to know them a bit better. Make your own judgements and determine if you are accepting of the person or not. If you find yourself accepting of this person or even not accepting, do not put other employees that have talked so negatively of them under the bus. It is not your place to do so. When doing this you may loose other relationships with people which can then create conflict.
Be yourself and make your own judgements. You have your own mind and you have a right to your own opinion. Always remember; not everyone in this world will be accepting of you and that is fine. It is okay to think differently than everyone else.