How to never offend your colleagues

Even in a large company, the office can seem like a very small place. That’s why it is so important to not get on the wrong side of a colleague, as not only does it affect your productivity, it could also have a huge impact on the office and what mood everybody wants to be in. Avoid offending your colleagues by always taking these in to consideration.

Always address colleagues correctly
Not sure how to spell their name? Ask. If Stephanie in HR prefers Steph, call her Steph. There is no harm in asking what people prefer and it is much better to know than not and risking it every time you address them. It may sound petty, but the way you address someone is a big deal and shows how much effort you are willing to put in with them.

Don’t break promises
If you said you would do something, don’t hope that it will just be forgotten about. If you have any respect for your colleagues, you would let them know if you were unable to do something. Chances are, they will understand but if you brush it under the rug, you won’t appear like a hard worker and could begin to annoy your colleagues.

Offer help
Not everyone gets everything straight away and may need some help. By offering your guidance, you are putting yourself out there to help your colleagues, which make you look much better than those who simply say: “Google it.” If someone is clearly struggling, offer to help and it will be remembered in the future.

Don’t judge – out loud
There is no point in pretending that none of us judge colleagues, because it is a normal thing to do. However, keep these opinions to yourself. Remember that everyone has had a different background and not every colleague thinks the same as you. So instead of discussing that with them and causing tension in the office, keep your opinion to yourself, get your head down and focus on work.

Write an email like it is going to the whole office
Imagine discussing a colleague’s smelly food and accidentally sending it the whole office? Don’t even take the risk, it’s not worth it. Even if someone is your bestie in the office, email them as you would email others in the office and keep it professional. You are in work after all.

Don’t join in gossip
It can be easy to get carried away with gossip in the office and although it may be a laugh with your colleagues, imagine being the one joked about. If things are getting a bit mean, walk away and get on with your work rather than spending your valuable time on pointless gossip.

Always be on time
Whether they are an intern or they are your boss, you should make an effort to be on time with any meeting, deadline or even phone call. Remember that the office doesn’t revolve around your schedule, so make sure you are on time to avoid seriously annoying your colleagues.