6 easy office etiquette tips

Part of creating a state of happiness in the office is having a certain amount of decorum and office etiquette. A few basic manners, common sense and some tacit rules are all that’s needed for easy atmosphere.

1. Get a group chat app

We use Campfire, allowing us to ask each other questions without disturbing anyone else in the office. It’s also good for that funny 5 minutes everyones seems to have at about 4:20 every day when we decide that posting pictures of people dressed as hippos is a good idea.

2. Spotify, Soundcloud and ubiquitous music

Everyone listens to their own music these days, its normal. Nobody seems to share at all or they just share the high frequencies…

  • if you’re hooked up to Airplay ensure that everybody gets a turn at playing “their” music
  • if you have a shared playlist ensure that everybody has access to add tracks to it
  • if you’ve got headphones on try to make sure that you’re not “audio leaking” too much. Push the buds in and lower the volume.

3. Don’t be late

We use google Calendar for booking out the meeting room, staff holidays, events, bank holidays, milestones, etc. Everybody has access to the central calendars making it easy to always know what is going on and when. Be on time. Its easy and has a massive impact.

4. Keep it tidy

Work areas show a lot about a persons character. There’s always a desk with loads of cups, paper, crumbs all over it, spilling on to a neighbours desk. The same applies to shared file repositories such as Dropbox (or even GitHub), some people move, dump, delete files and reorganise, instead of following the natural order of things. It takes minutes to keep tidy as you go and leave things in a better state than when you found them.

5. Don’t shout

A common phrase we used to hear shouting across the office was “… have you got thingies phone number?” or “…what’s so and so’s email address?” Don’t do it. Either use a chat app (as in point 1) or make sure that everything is in a central place. This is one of the reasons why we built Contactzilla and it has mitigated “contact shouting” to now being non existent.

6. Watch your vibrations

Most people are pretty good at turning their phones on to silent at work these days. What’s replaced it? People leave their phones on their desk with the vibrate on… With every alert, tweet and text message providing a buzz through the desk every few minutes it can be hugely distracting to others around you. Turn off vibrate on your phone or alerts.