Over the past few years, shared workplace spaces have emerged across the globe, with vast numbers of businesses opting for serviced office spaces as a cost-effective, flexible alternative to traditional workplaces. Coworking office spaces are designed to improve creativity, encourage collaborative working and boost productivity - offering businesses access to communal workspaces, meeting rooms and shared facilities.
However, it is important to remember that when it comes to a shared workplace, there are both written, and unwritten rules to adhere too. There is an unquestionable need for a ‘workplace etiquette’ to ensure that all coworkers respect one another and are able to work productively side by side in a friendly environment.
Respect your colleagues need to work
In a shared workspace it is important to respect one another's privacy, so ensure that you always look before you interrupt. If you can see that your colleagues are busy and occupied with other work, why not send them an email or a chat message so that they can reply when they’re available.
Noise & distractions
A shared office space is full to the brim of noise and distractions. Excessively loud conversations along with irritating habits such as tapping on the desk, fidgeting or humming can make it extremely difficult for others to concentrate.
We recommend that you try to refrain from these types of distractions, try to break the annoying habit of tapping or humming and attempt to practice using an ‘inside’ voice more often. If you’re struggling to concentrate with all the noise and distractions in your shared office space, then why not plug in your headphones and listen to some relaxing music to drown out the surrounding noise.
A key shared office space etiquette rule is to keep the environment as quiet as possible to ensure productivity. Therefore, phone conversations should only be taken in specific spaces - be this an empty meeting room, a designated phone booth or an empty office. Always be mindful of your volume while taking a call in a shared space and remember that there are others trying to work around you.
Don’t hold meetings in your office space
This follows on from the noise and distractions in your office… If you have a time scheduled for a meeting, then why not book an available meeting room instead of disturbing your co-workers. On the other hand, if an impromptu conversation with a colleague leads into a more in-depth one, head to a more private location to reduce noise levels and distractions.
Avoid smelly foods
Shared office spaces ultimately mean, shared lunch spaces. If you find yourself eating your lunches in your office, ensure that you are aware of smells. Within an enclosed office space, smells can become extremely overpowering and lead to discomfort and distraction to your co-workers.
We recommend that you are mindful of this when you pack your lunches and snacks, opt for mild foods that don’t create awful smells when cooked or opened.
Be friendly and courteous to others
In shared office spaces, we see the same people day to day. Therefore, it is important to ensure that you are friendly and courteous to all those that you share the space with. Make the effort to be pleasant, greet co-workers in a friendly manner and respect everyone that shares the space.
Being friendly and courteous to those that work alongside you will help you to make connections. This is one of the biggest benefits of shared office spaces; they are great for networking opportunities!
When working in close quarters, in shared office spaces, germs can be transferred and spread very easily. If you’re sick then we urge you to stay at home, to reduce the risk of passing the illness to fellow co-workers. If it is essential for you to go into the office then ensure that you take necessary steps to reduce the spread of germs, keep hand sanitizer nearby, cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze and practice levels of good hygiene.