10 golden rules to follow when working in an office environment

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Working in an office environment can be a very daunting experience.  With so many different personalities working under the same roof, from time to time issues can arise.

If you work in an office environment or you are about to, it is solely up to you to set your boundaries with your colleagues, but this does not mean that you go in and say “right I don’t like this or that”.

If you want your colleagues to have respect for you, you must ensure that you make your own environment positive because all too easy, office environments can turn toxic.

This may not apply to all office jobs, however if you personally keep to these golden rules, you should never go wrong.

  1. NEVER tell anyone your personal business.  All too often, you may confide in a fellow worker and they may use that information against you.  It could be passed around the office or passed to your line manager.  It could be incredibly private and confidential but that doesn’t stop the office gossip so bear this in mind when you find you want to share personal information with fellow co-workers.
  2. NEVER discuss salary information with anyone other than your HR Department.  You should not know what other people earn.  If you do discover someones salary information, do not share it with anyone.
  3. Limit personal calls and never use your work email address for personal use.  If you need to make an urgent call, step away from your desk, find a private office and make the call there.  If this is not possible, find an empty office, close the door and use the phone…quickly.  Personal emails, unless extremely urgent, should be sent before you get to the office, during your lunch break or when you are on your way home from work.
  4. NEVER send or forward a joke email on from your work email address.  If you do, it could backfire on you and the email could end up in the hands of your line manager.
  5. Before you send anything by email or letter, check you are sending it to the correct person with no one else copied in.  You can always try to recall an email, but if you send it to an email address outside the company, they will still be able to see it.
  6. NEVER get drunk around your work colleagues.  It is unprofessional, you may say something that you may regret in the morning or worst of all, you might say something you KNOW you shouldn’t have said or repeated.
  7. NEVER gossip.  No matter how juicy it may be.  No one likes an office gossip.
  8. NEVER swear at work.  It will undermine your position and quite frankly not everyone enjoys hearing people swear, no matter how funny it may be to others.
  9. ALWAYS be on time.  You can be on time 100 times, but it only takes that once for someone to notice, then they’ll be watching you everyday.
  10. NEVER undermine another person or attempt to humiliate or embarrass a colleague. Firstly it’s not nice being on the receiving end of it and secondly, it can happen to you if you are not careful.  If you play with fire, you may get burnt.