Common Courtesy in the Workplace

My wife is a very funny girl!  I am very happy to announce that I have been promoted to Senior Vice-President —– AT HOME!  My wife ceremoniously made the announcement to me the other day and that I would still be reporting to her.  Yep, she just cracks me up!  Anyway….

I thought it might be helpful to highlight a few helpful hints regarding workplace courtesy.  These “suggestions” come from a number of sources, hallway talk, complaints from others, etc. — these are consensus issues, not simply issues observed by any one person.  I know we all see issues from time-to-time that can be frustrating.  However, by doing these simple things you can be seen as someone that is professional, courteous, and a good person to work with.  Anyway, take these or leave them….

  • Be on time for meetings and scheduled events – no one enjoys waiting for someone that routinely disrespects the time for others
  • Start meetings on time – don’t wait for the chronically late individuals to arrive – perhaps, they will realize that they need to be on time in the future – and, when someone does arrive late, don’t “reward” them by wasting the time of everyone that arrived on time to help the late individual get caught up
  • Return calls – it is disrespectful to routinely “forget” to return phone calls
  • Answer e-mail questions – I do realize that e-mails can pile up, but please try to respond in a timely fashion whenever possible (for some individuals, I owe an apology on this one — I can be distracted occasionally and not provide input when asked – I am truly sorry about that and will work on improvement in this area)
  • Don’t waste the time of others – sometimes, it is perfectly fine to discuss the events of the weekend, etc., but just be sensitive when someone appears very busy or seems to be distracted because they may be operating on a deadline
  • Don’t perpetuate negative news – please realize that you drag down others when you continually are the individual with a negative attitude or frequently pass along negative information
  • Treat others with respect at all times – even when you disagree with others, they still deserve to be treated properly
  • On conference calls, announce who is attending the meeting – it is always helpful to know who is attending a meeting
  • Dress and groom appropriately for the event/meeting/occasion – yes, believe it or not, people notice
  • Use e-mail carefully – there is rarely a need to use all CAPS, copy “all”, or involve the masses – additionally, never say anything in e-mail that you would be uncomfortable reading about in the newspaper
  • Respect others while on conference calls – if you have an office, please shut your door when on a conference call – if you sit in an open area, either speak softly or reserve a conference room or borrow an office for conference calls
  • Clean up after yourself – if you make a mess at the coffee machine, clean it up; if you have lunch or make a mess in a conference room, clean it up
  • Thank those that support you – if you rely upon someone else to make travel arrangement, arrange meetings, make copies, or do anything else to make your job better or or easier, take the time to say “thanks”

And finally, remember the motto used in a previous post, “Work hard, play harder, and sleep fast.”  Today is the only day we are promised.

What other suggestions can you provide?   Thanks and have an awesome day!

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