How Not to Become an Office Personality

The other day I saw a great infographic about different office personalities. Of course, I don’t fit any of them and I’m sure you don’t either! Seriously, I think we all have a tendency at some point to fall into a few of the categories so it’s good to be aware of them.

Let’s take a look at a few of them –

The Chatterbox: While a 30-minute conversation to talk about last night’s episode of Sons of Anarchy may not be appropriate for the office, a 30-minute conversation that develops naturally around a work topic can be a good thing. The other month I ran into a colleague with whom I have not had much interaction. We decided to grab a soda and sit and chat. In the 30 minutes we covered a lot of ground and even resolved a few concerns we both had. The time was well spent.

The Meeting Scheduler: I like to ensure that the dots are connected and find that meetings can be helpful for this. However, it’s often just as easy to connect with the key individuals by email and save the meeting for another time. Another option is to call a 5-minute stand up meeting to ensure that all bases have been covered. If a meeting doesn’t have a clear purpose, cancel it.

The Email Overloader: Sometimes it is important to include multiple people on an email but at some point in the email chain it may be best to reach out directly to the one person who most needs the information. Another good thing to do with email is to clearly note in the subject line the purpose of the email. Is it for information only? Is an action required? If so, by when?

The Noisemaker: Whether you work in a cube or an office, it’s good to be aware of the noise you make. The office in which I work has thin walls so sometimes when I am Skyping over a bad connection, I raise my voice. I need to be careful that I’m not disturbing colleagues who are right outside my work space.

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