As a firm believer in self-expression and free speech, I would never hate on someone for being themselves, or for the occasional word vomit: it can’t be helped and personally, I love quirkiness. However, there are some things that are just not professionally appropriate, especially if you’re trying to move up in the world.
Avoid saying these things in the office and you’ll be promoted so high you can say whatever the *bleep* you want in no time!
I love to punctuate with swear words. I’m a northeastern girl, so we’re pretty numb to anything offensive. In the office, however, they might not be so tolerant. My boss is a profligate swearer and it can be extremely discomforting – even for me! It’s best to feel things out because some companies are loose with swearing and don’t blink an eyelid. Especially when things are going wrong, an occasional f-bomb is just the done thing.
#2 ‘I’ll Try’
The most annoying phrase when you’re asked to do something is ‘I’ll try’, you might be trying to communicate that you’ll give it your best shot, but it actually comes across as if you don’t think you can do it. Or worse, don’t want to do it. Always say yes if you’re committed to something and deal with the road blocks if you hit them.
Within reason, obviously. The quickest way to be successful in a role is to say yes to as many opportunities as possible, even the crappy ones. When I’m interning, I like to accept every task, because it’s important to show willingness, enthusiasm, and that you’re not afraid of hard graft. All of a sudden, your responsibilities start exceeding your job title and – BOOM – you’re the new MD!
#4 ‘I wish I was…’
On the beach, in a pool, somewhere else. Wishing you were somewhere else or dreaming of your waning ambition to be on Broadway, is not going to get you very far. The same goes for colleagues who clamor on about ‘next weekend’ when it’s not even hump day (I hate you by the way). If your boss gets the slightest hint that you don’t want to be there, they won’t take you seriously.
Every office is different, you might find in some offices that the things above are celebrated. At the end of the day, it’s important to be yourself. Just be mindful, respectful, and sensitive to other people. Don’t fall into the trap of replicating your colleagues’ behaviour, so you fit in. Don’t hate on work just because they are – you do you!
What’s your office etiquette?
Written by Chelsea Eddy
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