It's February, Valentine's Day and romance month. At this time of the year I have traditionally focused on romance in the office with hints on how to build personal relationships on the job without jeopardizing yours or someone else's career.
Stay with me because I am taking a different approach this month. Instead of office romance, I want to talk about office relationships--not going out with our coworkers after hours, but getting along with them during the day.
Statistics show that we spend more time with our coworkers than with our spouses, significant others, friends and family. As a rule we don't have a choice about who these people are. Some we like; others we may not. The bottom line is that if we want to be profitable and productive, we all have to get along in the office. Here is where good manners and business etiquette come into play.
These are my suggestions for making life more pleasant and everyone more productive at the office:
- Ask permission before you enter a coworker's cubicle. Try saying, "Is this a good time to talk?" or "Do you have a few minutes?"
- Keep noise at a minimum in your cubicle by putting your phone on silent ringer or vibrate. Lower the volume on your land line and drop your voice as well.
- If you need to block out other people's noise, do the same for them. Use a headset for your workplace music and scrap the old desktop radio.
- Schedule a private office or room for conference calls and when using speaker phones.
- If you have a break between projects and your coworker is swamped, ask if you can help. What goes around, comes around.
- When you go for coffee, offer to bring back a cup for your colleague.
- When you hear gossip in the office, keep it to yourself.
- If you have issues with a coworker, go to that person first. Keep your problem from becoming the hottest new topic around the water cooler.
- Keep kindness, courtesy and respect for others uppermost in your mind.
- Always remember that manners matter in the office and that adding polish builds profits.
Here's to better relations with your coworkers and colleagues!
P.S. For more information about office relationships and business etiquette in general, purchase an autographed version of Manners That Sell and receive a $5.00 discount through March 31, 2011. Simply visit the link above, add the book to your shopping cart and use the coupon code MARCHBOOK to receive your discount!
About Lydia Ramsey
Lydia Ramsey is a business etiquette expert, executive etiquette coach, professional speaker and author of Manners That Sell™, offering keynotes and seminars to corporations, associations, colleges and universities. Contact her at 912-598-9812.
Do you have a need for a business etiquette speaker? If so, learn how you can hire Lydia.
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