Do you have “that person” in your office that whenever they speak, no matter where they are it feels as if they are standing right behind you? That voice that carries from the most distant corner and the farthest cubicle. You know who I mean. In my current situation I have two of “those” people. First, there is the woman with the high pitched voice and strong American accent. (I think she swallowed a microphone, with very bad feedback, as a child.) The sound just comes slicing through the air and screeches into your eardrums. Then there is “Radio Guy”. This guy has a voice that truly should be on radio. It is a deep booming voice even when he is trying to talk “quietly”. If he stood at the front of a huge room with the worst acoustics in the world, everyone would still be able to hear him clearly. Of the two Radio Guy is the least annoying because he does have a nice voice. The problem is no matter how hard you try to ignore him when he is talking to others his voice draws your attention away from what you should be doing. This is a negative in two ways. One, you keep getting interrupted and lose your concentration for the task at hand. Two, you are tempted to look at him every time he speaks, making you look like you are eavesdropping!
Open plan offices are very common now but you would be amazed by what you still see and hear going on in these shared spaces. Here are a few do’s and dont’s for working in an in this type of environment:
Gentlemen, when walking through the office Don’t adjust yourself first and then turn around to see if anyone can see you…they can!
Ladies, don’t hold conversations at your desk or other’s desks regarding the pros and cons of various feminine sanitary products.
Don’t perform personal business transactions on the phone while in the office because when you give out your bank details, date of birth, credit cards number etc. the person on the other end of the phone is not the only making notes!
Don’t argue with your kids on the phone because everyone will just think you are the meanie no matter what the child has done.
If you are the one person in the office with the piercing laugh please refrain because it makes others want to strangle you!
Hovering,…this spans both the do’s and don’ts. If you are hovering because you do not want to be at your desk but you have nowhere else you need to be this is a don’t.
Hovering with Intent is slightly different and gives you leeway as you are simply trying to give someone else (who is currently engaged in something you consider to be not very important or you think will end very soon) a clue you need to speak to them and s acceptable.
Hovering because someone else is hovering near your desk is not acceptable.
Eating in an open plan office has its risks. The rule of thumb should be just because you think the strong aroma of your lunch is nice does not mean others share your olfactory preferences.
Don’t eat a food that can be measured in decibels.
Don’t PICK anything!!
Be considerate of others but if someone else is annoying you with one of the don’ts plan to use a more offensive don’t back!
I hope you will find these tips useful in your day to day working life. 🙂