Office etiquette helps to keep work flowing smoothly and it enables you to conduct yourself in a courteous and professional manner with your co-workers and superiors. Are you wondering why you should be aware of the dos and don’ts of office etiquette? Simply because the way you behave at work influences your happiness as well as those of others around you. Here are a few important don’ts that you should be aware of and should consciously avoid at the workplace.
Religion and Politics are your basic ‘taboo topics’. They must be avoided at all costs as most people are very sensitive about these topics. It is all very well for you to have opinions of your own but be very careful about expressing them at the workplace, as you might unknowingly offend some of your colleagues. And, that is something you don’t want to do.
Socializing in the office is a good way of building rapport. However, you should avoid leaving your desk constantly to go have a ‘good gossip’ with your office pal during work hours, as this reflects poorly on your performance and will decrease your productivity level.
Your office may be allowing you special online privileges or perhaps your work consists of doing rigorous online research. If this is the case, you may be tempted to use this time for social networking. Note your employers will be able to tell a lot about you from the sites you frequent and you should probably save the updating of your Facebook status for off duty hours.
Do not answer or make personal phone calls during office hours unless it is absolutely urgent as this is unprofessional behavior. Excuse yourself and make sure you are somewhere private where you can talk without disturbing your colleagues. Not everybody wants to be made privy to your personal life.
One of the major don’ts is gossiping about your colleagues behind their backs. You can never be sure if what you tell someone else will remain a secret or will be spread around courtesy of the office grapevine.
If you are perfectly happy with your job, you should try to avoid indulging in an inter-office relationship. Firstly, assume that nothing stays private in the office. Would you really want your relationship to be the hottest office gossip making the rounds? Also, keep in mind that if the relationship were to end, it would lead to awkwardness and you may even feel forced to transfer or quit your job.
There will probably be times when you will manage to get away with leaving a couple of minutes earlier for lunch or at the end of the work day. But be warned, if you are caught leaving early, more than a couple of times, you may be given an official warning. This could even be grounds for dismissal.
Looking out for other jobs during office timings is something you must absolutely avoid. Using your company’s resources to hunt for better job prospects while you are being paid for your current job is a major discourtesy. If you indulge in this, you are also indirectly letting your prospective future employers know that you have no problem using company resources for your own personal gain.
If you consciously avoid these major don’ts, you will be able to interact well in an office setting and will become the ‘perfect employee’. This will result in you being noticed for all the right reasons and will definitely ensure your job satisfaction.