20 Tips on Workplace Etiquette
"This is an evident proof that you are acting as a real professional and adult."
Workplace etiquette covers much more than just being courteous and nice with co-employees and superiors. It does not stop with just daily practices of saying good day, please, hello and thank you. It is absolutely more than just verbal courtesy. It is also very painful to realize that time have greatly changed when it comes to the behavior of most employees in the workplace. Certain factors like stress and conflict sometimes affect the situation as well as the practice of proper etiquette in the workplace. If you will tackle issues related to this concern, you might be reluctant somehow not only because it is not easy to understand but because it can be a very complicated matter to deal with.
Maybe it is the fast-paced and hectic picture of the office arena that makes this matter somehow difficult to tackle and as a manager or a person of a higher position, you are somehow well-informed that digging in further would require a great deal of attention and careful deliberation in order to make sure that you will not sound intimidating and bulging into an employee's behavior.
It is the right of every company to implement policies that are intended to instill proper workplace etiquettes to their employees; however if the company is too lax on this area it is the responsibility of the employees themselves to make sure that they abide by what is right and proper when it comes to the workplace etiquette. Here are some tips that can be vital if you are keen on practicing workplace etiquette:
- Respect your co-employee's right for privacy. There are times when your co-worker wants to be alone for some reason or another, if this happens keep your distance and let him have his own private time alone. Once he bounces back to his usual self and starts to mingle with you and other co-employees, then good. If he does talk about the reason why he did that, be a good listener but never ask questions first because he might not like to talk about it at all.
- Observe silence. Remember that you are in a professional office setting; proper workplace etiquette suggests that you keep your voice modulated inside the office. You have to keep in mind that loud voice might cause disturbance with co-workers that are busy working with their tasks.
- Never gossip. It is one of the mortal sins in a professional environment. On the contrary, you would never want to be the topic of gossipers yourself, right? Then it is but proper not to do unto others what you don't want others to do onto you. In short, practice "The Golden Rule."
- Follow the proper clothing etiquette during washdays. While the company may allow casual clothes during weekends and certain days of the week. You should make sure that you are still in the proper office attire. Sleeveless and backless tops are a no-no for ladies while short pants and slippers are not acceptable for male employees.
- Never underestimate a fellow worker even if you are more superior in position and a senior in the team. Do not assume a task just because you think you are better than him. Do your own task and help those who are seeking assistance but never brag and be boastful.
- Think before you speak. No matter how interested you are in asking a question first ask yourself what would you feel if you would be asked the same question. This goes the same way if you want to comment on a co-worker. Always ask yourself, what if I were in his shoes?
- Be nice to appreciate a co-worker's good deed. Learn to practice how to give positive remarks without sounding like a kiss up.
- Accept the ideas of others. This is especially true during meetings and brainstorming sessions. Even if you think that yours is the best option, try to listen to a co-employee's ideas as well.
- Learn how to air your side without any arguments. Watch the tone of your voice when discussing matters with a co-worker or the boss. This is to make sure that you act within the right limit. Standing by your principles can be carried out without arguing with someone in the workplace. Arguing that may lead to petty fights is a big no-no in the list of workplace etiquettes.
- Never try to change a co-employee just because you happen to see flaws in any aspect. If you do, there is a great chance that others will see you as intimidating into their preference, which is just like creating a bad reputation for yourself.
- Proper etiquette in the workplace dictates to keep your working space clean all the time. Make sure that you tidy up the place before and after duty. Creating an organized environment is also important in creating a more comfortable space for you to move when doing your tasks.
- If there is a pantry or kitchen space in your office, make sure that you keep it clean after every use. Return cups and saucers and other things that you used to their proper places.
- Do your part in maintaining the cleanliness of shared areas like the comfort room. In case there is someone responsible for cleaning the area, inform him or her if you see something that needs his or her attention.
- When using office equipments, make sure that you take care of them so as to prevent damage. In case you notice something has been out of order, inform the proper personnel in charge of the maintenance.
- Make sure that office supplies are always complete. Never bring home supplies from the office like bond papers, staplers and staple wires, and even light objects like pens and erasing fluids. If you do, you are increasing the cost for these supplies instead of helping the company gain substantial income.
- Use email only for business purpose. Never use the Internet for personal purposes like chatting for long hours.
- Equipment abuse and destruction of office property is against workplace etiquettes.
- Observe proper personal hygiene all the time.
- Do not use strong scents of perfume when going to work.
- Always make sure that you are following deadlines for tasks as a sign of respect for the company as a whole.
Even if you are revolving in a fast paced office environment, no employee should use this as an excuse not to follow appropriate etiquette in the workplace. This is an evident proof that you are acting as a real professional and adult.