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Office Etiquette 101: What to Do, What Not to Do

December 11, 2019

Employees spend a good portion of their week in the office. A place where people of different backgrounds, experiences, and skill-levels intersect. In this article, we’re going to share aspects of office etiquette rules that you should be aware of before entering the workspace.

We’ve selected a collection of important tidbits on professional etiquette. Let’s start!


Email etiquette is key. Before you start writing an email, take a moment to pause and think. If the matter is complicated or potentially sensitive, a meeting may be a more appropriate way to address the situation, as it’s hard for people to accurately discern important nonverbal communication cues through an email. This will save you time and increase understanding within your team.

If You’re Sick, Stay Home

Germs easily spread in an office with shared bathrooms, dishes, and conference rooms. It’s worth taking a couple of days off get healthy; you don’t want the whole office to get sick!

Let Others Focus

If it looks like your colleagues are focused (headphones in, eyes glued to their screen), they most likely are. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to connect and bond with the people on your team, but there is a time and place for it.

Keep It Clean

Keeping your workspace clean is a benefit to you and the people around you. Wash your dishes, pick up trash. If your desk is surrounded by a clutter of wrappers or crumpled papers, try to keep it clean. A clean office promotes an environment where professionals can focus.


Respect presents itself in different forms. Listening and communicating in a way that shows you hear your coworkers’ input is validating to your teammates. Listening allows for clear discussion where you can convey your thoughts and opinions accurately. You don’t be the person texting on their phone while someone is leading a presentation. Respect is a two-way street. It will create a better work atmosphere for everyone on the team!

If You’re Late, Let Others Know

If you’re late or think it’s a possibility, remember to notify team members as soon as possible.

Now that you have some tips on workplace etiquette in your repertoire, you’re more prepared to navigate the workspace.

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