Remember how I spent forever and a day in school and wrote this about what not to do in class? Well, let me begin by saying that I recently received a “promotion” at work and I am very thankful. It makes me feel like an adult which is right on time since I’ll be 30 soon; talk about the social extension of childhood. I’ve had the opportunity to work at some very prestigious organizations from the nation’s oldest legal services organization to the world’s largest investment banks.
During my time at all these various organizations I’ve seen a lot. I’ve recently realized that there are some common issues that follow me from office to office and industry to industry. I’ve come up with just a few do’s and don’ts that I think would help things run more smoothly. Let’s discuss.
- Do offer snacks. I’m so bad at sharing people think I’m an only child. Offering snacks is a small gesture that goes a long way. It makes you look like a team player even if you’re not. Fake it till you make it, right?
- Do let people have their breakfast or coffee. Unless it’s an emergency don’t interrupt someone’s breakfast or morning latte. There’s literally nothing worse than a cold latte and having me repeat the same thing I told you via email yesterday is going to kill my vibe.
- Do not underestimate your perceived competition. I’ve yet to read The Art of War but what I do know is, an attempt to expose someone else may expose you. A colleague attempted to shade me to our boss but what she didn’t realize was, her attempt exposed how little she knew about the subject matter. It took everything in me not to say “bloop” in my Nene Leakes voice when I saw her.
- Do not eat smelly food. I’m sure curry cabbage sardines are delicious but I’d like to be able to work without gagging because you microwaved it for 10 continuous minutes then left it on your desk in what can only be an attempt to punish everyone around you.
- Do hold the elevator door when it makes sense. Don’t be that person. Everybody hates that person.
- Don’t violate the restroom. Save gross and inconsiderate habits for your home and those who care about you personally. I don’t want to see your floss particulates stuck to the mirror. I just want to touch up my lip gloss.
- Don’t say things just for the sake of it. I hate Mondays or days after a long weekend. I have to endure all the “how was your weekend/holiday?” chatter. If I’m looking at you, your weekend couldn’t have been that out of control.
- Do not throw things in my garbage. Everyone has a garbage can. Why must you throw your sticky soda can in my garbage? Are we in a Cold War that only you know about? Keep your garbage to yourself.
- Do dress appropriately. Afterwork events are huge in NYC and sometimes you do have to add a blazer or cardigan to make your freakum dress office friendly but let that be the exception and not the rule. I know somebody who frequently wears a quilted leather mini skirt and I can’t tell if she’s campaigning for office THOT or if she’s just remedial.
- Don’t invite yourself to lunch. We have to tolerate each other for at least 8 hours a day anyway. Can I just get Chipotle in peace? It’s my quiet time.
- Do not OD on personal calls. We all have lives outside of work but I shouldn’t know that your man didn’t come home or that you’re behind on your rent.
- Do respect email. There’s something about the formality of office email that bothers me when people abuse it. Follow the commands in the email if you’re the recipient. If you’re the sender know what your request is. I got an email that said “no action is necessary” once. The next day I got another email asking about my action. Why can’t we say “bish what?!” via company email? That would make things so much easier.
- Do not get the boss involved unless it’s absolutely necessary. This could be one of my biggest pet peeves but I have so many it’s hard to tell. You want to piss me off. . .CC the boss on a basic non-emergency email. Everyone should get one freebie. Meaning, just send the email. If you don’t get what you need, when you need, then get the boss involved. The fake psychological warfare of CC’ing the boss unnecessarily will never work in your favor. Personally, I think a fist fight in the ladies room is the only interpersonal thing that requires management’s attention.
What burns your biscuit at work? Comment below at work.