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Workplace Etiquette For Newbees Part 2
By Sonya Buck, Australia


The impression you make in the workplace is so important.  Getting people ‘off-side’ can have impacts from limiting the co-operation you receive, to derailing your career path.


Recently we featured tips on etiquette for newcomers in the work place.   There were so many issues to consider that we decided to provide them in 2 parts.


Communication II

Keep your mobile ring tone simple, or better still put the phone on silent.  Your crazy ring tone may be funny at the pub, but not in the office


Don’t use text jargon in your work emails or texts. LOL mightn’t impress your boss.  Emoticons may be okay if you are writing a casual email to a colleague.



We probably don’t need to say it, but you must arrive on time to work and for meetings.  Set Outlook reminders or reminders on your phone a few minutes before any meeting is due to be held.


If possible, try not to run out the door right at the minute the work day ends.  See what your colleagues are doing and what the expectation is.  You don’t want to look like a ‘clock watcher’



Australia has strict acts in relation to race, gender, sexual or religious discrimination.  Don’t make jokes about any of these.  You may cause offence.



Don’t interrupt colleagues or your boss when they are speaking.  Even if you have a great idea and want to express it, wait till a pause in the conversation.


Use please and thank you (be appreciative) and ensure you share credit for joint projects with your colleagues.


Depending on the work environment, don’t swear.  It may be acceptable working on the farm, but not in some other types of workplace.


Take part in rituals such as taking turns in buying the morning tea and if everyone chips in, make sure you pay your share.



Keep your desk or even the shared company car, tractor tidy.  In the office ensure you aren’t the one in the office who leaves dirty dishes in the sink or coffee spilt on the bench.  Throw out your unwanted food from the fridge.



If you work in an open area in the office, don’t eat strong smelling food.  Also try to hold back on the amount of perfume or aftershave you use.  Smells are one of workers’ most common complaints and this is understandable taking into account the incidence allergies.



Don’t forget to shower, particularly if you work outdoors.  You would be surprised how many men and women complain about colleagues.     See Dress Code in part 1.


Don’t be a ‘know all’

Don’t try and prove your boss wrong in front of others.  If you disagree, speak respectfully to the boss in private giving reasons why you disagree.


Remember you might just be out of University, but practical experience in the real world is invaluable and deserves respect.


Yes, there is plenty to think about when you start out in the workforce, but using common sense and being self aware will ensure you have the etiquette side of things covered.


To revisit Workplace Etiquette for newbees Part 1 – click here