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4 rules for cell phone etiquette in the office

There are personal cell phones. Increasingly people have office cell phones, sometimes the land lines are gone.

Courtesy is still king, even in this high-tech, fast-paced, instant communication era. Cell phones need to be handled like other technologies that have been assimilated into appropriate usage.

1. Cell phone ring
If you have a cell phone at work, the ring should be professional and tolerable rather than annoying. Many people will hear it. Putting cell phones on vibrate mode or silent are options; vibrating phones left unattended on desktops are annoying.

2. Cell phone volume – ring and conversation
How loud is your office phone? How loud do you talk into your landline phone? Those are good gauges for cell phone ring volume and voice volume. There's no need to speak any louder into a wireless phone than a landline phone.

3. Cell phone interruptions
Taking a call no matter where you are or what you are doing with no regard to what or who you are interrupting is rude. Technology is not a substitute for common sense.

4. Personal cell phone calls
(How acceptable are personal calls in your office? Are there rules or guidelines? What is the culture?)
Keep personal conversations brief or go to a private area, perhaps outside. If you use a private room, don’t slam the door when you go in. Maintain at least a 10-foot zone from anyone while talking. Don’t have inappropriate conversations in public.

Send a message with your cell phone use
Be respectful of those around you and use discretion when it comes to placing and taking cell phone calls in public---including in the workplace. Your coworkers will thank you for your civility.

Related post
Was a cell phone invited to your meeting or dinner? Feb. 26, 2008


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