Office etiquette may seem like common sense to most, but we have all worked with at least one person who missed the memo. You know, the coworker that makes you feel like this:
And sometimes you react like this...
We spend a lot of time at work and it is important to be respectful of everyone around you. Let’s explore some general office etiquette tips to make sure you are doing your part in creating a great work environment.
(It's for your own good)
Always be conscious of your noise level and avoid distracting behaviors.
(Bob! The tapping!)
(What did the keyboard ever do to you?)
If you need to play audio from your computer or want to listen to music, you know the drill…
(Thank you, headphone gods!)
When you're having conversations throughout the office, be aware that someone could be on an important phone call or a client might be down the hall. Be aware of your comments and your volume so that you don't disturb others.
Don't forget to be respectful of everyone's space. Avoid standing outside a co-worker's work area waiting on them to become available.
(A little creepy, don't you think?)
If your co-worker is on the phone or is already speaking with someone else, don't distract them by trying to get their attention with hand signals or whispers.
Personal phone calls should always be kept to a minimum and your cell phone should be on silent or vibrate mode. Avoid using the speakerphone unless you are in a conference room or private office.
(Not everyone needs to hear what your mom is making you for dinner, Jerry)
If you want to bring lunch and/or snacks to the office, be aware of the limited refrigerator space and don't forget to throw out perishable items. Some people are very sensitive to certain smells, so it's polite to avoid pungent foods that will stink up the office as well.
(Said no one ever)
Make sure to never take a co-worker's lunch or snacks. Can you imagine how upset you would be if you were looking forward to eating your leftover Chinese all morning only to discover someone else had eaten it? Being hangry is a real thing, and it's not fun for anybody.
When mistakes happen in the workplace, it’s important that they are handled appropriately to avoid tension. While I’m sure you are a star employee, we are all human, and are bound to make mistakes every now and then. You should always be humble enough to admit your mistake and take responsibility.
Decide who needs to be involved with fixing the mistake and apologize to those affected.
(And make it genuine for crying out loud)
Most importantly, once the mistake has been fixed, move ahead and...
(Go ahead, channel your inner Elsa!)
Being respectful and courteous to others is something we should all strive to do – both in the office and in life. We spend 40+ hours a week with these people. So even if your boss acts like this:
or the guy sitting next to you does this...
or Lisa from Accounting wants to tell you her whole life story...
Remember, that the only person you can control is YOU.
So, forget about the Lisa's and the Jerry's of the world. Start creating the work environment you want to be in today! It won't always be easy, but at the end of the day, you know you did your part. And alas, the weekend will be here before you know it.