5 Etiquette Lessons for the Workplace

5 Etiquette Lessons for the Workplace

Some other workplace etiquette dilemmas that Post, as a co-author of “Emily Post’s Etiquette, 18th Edition,” addresses include these:


1. Tweeting responsibly. If you’re attending a conference where you’re expected to tweet updates, the speaker usually understands that.

But if that’s not the case, put your phone away and listen.


2. Getting the phone off the table. “It’s not another utensil you need to eat a meal,” she says. “If you put it on the table ‘just in case,’ then that means the potential is there for you to answer it. It’s like a ticking time bomb waiting to go off.”


3. Giving up texting. Again, if you’re texting during a meeting or a conversation, you’re showing disrespect to others.


4. Shaking hands. If someone offers a handshake, you should return it and make sure you’re standing.
The only excuse not to shake hands is if you’re sick.

Then Post says she’s not sure what you’re doing at work in the first place because infecting other people is rude. Still, if you’re feeling under the weather and somehow still find yourself offered a handshake, explain that it’s nice to see the person, but you’re not well.


5. Remembering you don’t owe anyone a holiday gift. It can be seen a “currying favor” to give the boss a gift, and you don’t owe a colleague a present even if he or she gives you one.

“And don’t lie about it and say you have something for the person at home when you don’t,” Post says. “Just say thank you.”

Gifts such as cologne or clothes should be returned to any officemate who gives them to you with an “I appreciate the gesture, but I feel this is inappropriate” response. She advises that any gift from the boss that crosses the line should be reported to human resources.