Workplace manners

What makes human beings different from animals is simply etiquette. Etiquette makes people cultured individuals who influence their world positively and leave marks on the sand of time.

Everyone wants to associate with a person who does not know how to relate well in society.

When our behaviour in public is questionable, then we are rated as animals, this is why we should not behave irrationally or illogically.

Etiquette means behaving in a socially responsible way. It teaches people how to talk, walk and most importantly behave in society. It is essential for an everlasting first impression, and inculcates a feeling of trust and loyalty in the individuals, makes people become more responsible and mature. 

What etiquette should be displayed at the workplace?

Avoid social media: Unless your job requires you to peruse social networking sites all day, avoid them while you are on the clock. Though surfing Facebook or Twitter might be tempting, it can be detrimental to your work performance and productivity.

Take that phone call elsewhere: Everyone has a cellphone these days, so getting personal calls at work is pretty much unavoidable. But do not assume that just because your phone rings, it is alright to take it right at your desk. If you get a personal call, excuse yourself and answer it in private.

Gossip: The big no-no. Who has not been tempted to speculate on the lives of their co-workers? It is especially tempting when everyone else in the office is doing it. But remember that gossip says more about you than it does about the person you are discussing. Do not talk about others, and keep your personal life private to discourage water-cooler talk about you.

Keep emails formal: Email seems pretty casual, doesn’t it? It is not like correspondence on letterhead that requires careful composition and proofreading – right? Contrary to popular belief, work emails should be held to the same formal standards that you would hold any other office correspondence. So toss the slang, get the punctuation right and proofread before you hit send.

Watch your language: No matter how comfortable you are with your co-workers, or how casual your office may seem, blurting out a curse word can get you noticed for all the wrong reasons. Let your words lift others rather than pull them down, so keep your language clean.

Dress smart: There are many places where expressing your unique style is a fantastic thing to do.  Dress appropriately for the work place. In other words, save the see-through dresses, sandals with socks, muscle shirts, and plunging necklines for other occasions.

Remember that scents travel: Do you have an allergy to perfume or cologne? Do you get a headache when you smell spicy food? Some of your colleagues might. Keep those potent lunches away from your desk, and do not overdo it on the fragrances. Those around you will be grateful.

Knock before entering: Sometimes an informal office atmosphere can go too far. That is especially true when people start drifting from one cubicle or office to the next, without bothering to knock or otherwise announce their presence. Treat others as though they are in the midst of serious business — even if they aren’t — and knock before you enter their personal space.

Stay home if you are sick: It seems like an obvious rule, but when you’re stuck in the rat race, dropping out for a few days of the flu can seem detrimental to your career. However, going to work sick does more harm than good. Not only does it make you feel worse and potentially spread your germs to others, when you’re under the weather your productivity most likely suffers. Make life easier on everyone and use those sick days.

Save the job search for home: Looking for a new job? Do not do it on company time. Not only might someone get wind of your search (and feed that information into the gossip mill), but taking time away from your current employer to look for a new one is just plain rude.

Whether you are in a high-stress office or a relaxed small business, etiquette matters. Brush up on it now to continue making a great impression on your boss, co-workers and clients. 

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