Tag: communication

Know your proper office etiquette. Part 2

Keep it Clean

Keep your work area, your area for working. Avoid filling every square inch with photos and other memorabilia, since you need the space for work related items. Workplace etiquette says that it is crucial for you to have a workspace that is neat and clean.If your workplace has a kitchen, this can be a real source for problems in an office. Many times, when others don’t clean up their own messes, it can be a real source for tension. Be sure that if you make a mess, it is cleaned up quickly, and any food items you bring have your name and date on them. Also, make sure to always get rid of old containers when the workweek ends. If you see that the creamer is getting low, fill it back up. Don’t leave it for the next person to worry about. Cleaning up after yourself is not only good workplace etiquette, it is just good manners.


When using the restroom, be a good employee, and clean up any soap or water that is on the counter tops. If a problem with water on the floor, or something of that nature happens, always tell the right people, so it can be taken care of right away. This isn’t only good office etiquette, it can also help avoid accidents. How would you like to be the one that slipped on a puddle of water because no one said anything?

Office Supplies

If you use items that are shared, like printers, staplers, and things of that nature, be sure that they are working the way they should be before you leave. If a printer has a paper jam, don’t act as if you didn’t know and leave it for the next person. If it were you, you wouldn’t want to have to clear someone else’s paper jam, and waste valuable time. Be respectful of others, and it will make you feel nice when you are able to show the right workplace etiquette to others.

On another note, if you can not decide what gift to get a fellow coworker or your boss, office supplies will do.

Always Ask

If you do have to borrow anything from a coworker, always ask before taking it. The last thing you want is to be labeled an office thief. It shouldn’t be difficult, you were taught this in kindergarten!

No Time for Snooze

Avoid the old falling- asleep- when- hard- at- work routine. Not only is this terrible office etiquette, it can be embarrassing as well, especially if you are a snorer.

Know your proper office etiquette. Part 1

Office and Workplace Etiquette

For your day to run smoothly it makes good sense to practice the proper office etiquette. You have to remember that you are not at cozy home sweet home. Therefore you must think of others when doing things like talking on the phone, or asking to borrow office supplies. When you are able to use the right workplace etiquette, everyone will have a better time, and the office will run more effortlessly.

On the Phone

When you are on the telephone, be aware of how loud you are speaking. Can the person on the other side of the hall hear everything you are saying? This is not only embarrassing for the speaker, it can also be distracting and bothersome to others. Workplace etiquette is important in matters such as these, so be sure that your conversation isn’t being heard by the entire office. If you happened to be having a private conversation, you probably wouldn’t want the whole office to know about it. If you have a door to your office, make sure that it is closed before you speak on the phone, if you are notorious for loud conversations.

Conversations at Work

If you are speaking to someone privately, try to limit conversations like this to just a short time. Since you are at your place of business, it is important that you use the facilities for business related tasks, and not talking about the new club you went to last night. Save that for after work when you get together with co workers for some drinks at the local pub. This is crucial office etiquette, and should be adhered to whenever possible.

Although it can be quite difficult, workplace etiquette says that it is best if the conversations you have at work are related to matters of business, and not personal matters. If you accidentally overhear a conversation that is private, pretend as if you didn’t. No one likes it when you stick your nose where it shouldn’t be! If someone wants your advice about something, they will ask you personally for it.

There is usually at least one person who likes to gossip in every office. Avoid that person like the plague. When speaking of people in the office talk only about things you are certain of, and avoid making judgments about people and things they do. We all have skeletons in our closet. So keep conversations at work about work, and not the latest juicy news on your coworkers. Same rules apply to office parties.


Scents and Smells

If you are in small office, or even a large one with cubicles, or open space, try to avoid wearing perfumes that are overpowering, or bringing in flowers or other things with strong scents unless everyone is okay with it. You never know when one of your coworkers might have an allergy.


When eating in the office, office etiquette states that you should attempt to stay away from bringing foods with strong scents, since when combined with other food scents, they can become quite unappetizing. Also, when getting rid of empty food containers, do it away from where you work, to avoid the lingering scent.

How to Socialize Effectively

Socializing effectively in company events and parties indicates that you’re a friendly person who is willing to meet and open ties to new people. Socializing poorly, however, can demonstrate that you are unsure of yourself, or arrogant. Here are some tips to improve your socializing skills when attending in company events.

How to socialize effectively at company parties:

1.) Talk to everyone. Don’t talk to just one person. Don’t talk to people only in your department. Open up, as much as possible, and talk to everyone. Some people are also anxious when it comes to initiating ties to other people, so they will welcome you if you take the initiative.

2.) Give solid handshakes. Remember, a good handshake makes good impressions.

3.) Talk of anything. Listen to the other party as he or she speaks. Ask open ended questions to avoid one-liner answers such as “yes, I do.” “No, I haven’t” or “I’m not sure.”

4.) Use the body language. Keep your stance open and your arms unfolded to show how approachable you are. Do not frown, always smile!

5.) Maintain eye contact. When you do so, the person you are talking to will be secured, and it will keep the conversation flowing. Glancing everywhere while talking to a person can be discomforting, and it will make the other party feel unimportant!

How to Deal with Common Socializing Mistakes

One reason why people are afraid to socialize is because of the fear that they will make mistakes. Actually, for most things out there, the reason why people don’t do what they want is because they are afraid of making mistakes. Mistakes are good, if you let them be. It helps us learn and helps us grow. So if you make a social mistake, accept it and learn from it. You will be more confident and a better socializer.

In dealing with common social mistake, you just have to be a little tricky.  If you forget someone’s name, when trying to remember fails, ask for that person what most people call him or her. You will not sound like you forgot the name. If you are writing a colleague’s name and forgot what it is, ask the colleague how he or she spells the name.

As for deeper mistakes, like unintentionally hurting someone, the best way to calm the tension is humor. Apologizing sincerely, however, proves to be better.


The Power of Stories in Business Communication

Stories are the most important aspect of any really great conversation.  Compelling stories that draw us into a situation and have us become part of the story even when we were not there.  

Stories are really necessary in one of the most important conversations you will have, a job interview. Why?  How else do you become memorable when so many qualified candidates are competing for the same positions?  Through compelling stories that clearly demonstrate what you can do you will help the hiring manager “see” you in action.

We get ourselves so stressed wondering what to say, how to have the right answer when we don’t know the questions.  How do you study before the test – prepare. Prepare by remembering your success stories.  When you are in that space of knowing you were both personally and professionally successful something happens to the story.   It becomes real and you as the storyteller are the hero.

I love when I can work with my clients to create a story that plays a movie in my head.  When I can start to see them at work.  One of my clients was telling me “I’m a hard worker, loyal and dedicated”.  Nice words but nebulous.  I asked him to give me a story demonstrating those traits.  He recalled a time when a co-worker was on vacation and he picked up her role so him and the team could get their work done.   

During the story he was leaning over picking up files, going back to his desk and getting the work done, yet he never left his chair.   He recalled another story where he went to help a co-worker kick-start the reports that the team all needed to complete month end reporting.   Again the discussion became animated, expressive and brought me into his workspace.  I could see him moving from desk to desk helping others start or finish their work demonstrated through his words and aligned body language.

As I started to see him in his work place I had imagery of Andrew as a positive Drano for his work team.  Wherever there was a clog in the workflow Andrew came to the rescue to unclog the work and tidy up any inefficiencies so work could again flow to his desk.

Did I tell you he is hardworking, loyal and dedicated?  Can you see it? Can you feel it?  Would you like Andrew working on your team?  In his words, “you won’t regret hiring me.  And after hearing and “seeing” his stories I know I would not regret having him on my team.