Workplace Etiquette

Do you ever worry about making a blunder at work? Sometimes it’s hard to know what’s the “right” thing to do in certain situations. However, there are some general guidelines that might help you succeed in your current job, and possibly even smooth the way to a promotion:

  • Build trust. Do what you say you’re going to do.
  • Accept feedback gracefully, whether it’s from your boss or your peers. Listen calmly and objectively first, and then decide how you want to respond to the suggestions.
  • Respect differences in the backgrounds and opinions of others. Even if you disagree at first, different ideas might lead to better ways of doing things.
  • Don’t criticize your boss. If something’s bothering you, focus on what you want, and offer solutions. For example, instead of complaining that your boss is a lousy communicator, you might propose regular meetings to improve communication.
  • Keep others “in the loop” Before you make a change at work, explain your idea to others to enlist their support. You’ll get less resistance, and you might even get some helpful feedback.
  • Invite participation, particularly in projects that are new or exciting. People usually enjoy working on something different, especially if they will share the responsibility for the outcome.
  • Share the glory. Support others and give them credit for their contributions. You might find this support returned in kind when you need it.
  • Dress the part. Pay attention to how others see you. You won’t get a good review or pay raise just for being neat, clean, and well-dressed, but it can’t hurt.
  • Be positive. You may not like everything about your job or organization, but complaining will just bring you and your co-workers down further. If you’re planning to stay at your job, do your best and accept that nothing in life is perfect.