"EXCUSEZ-MOI" - Robert Half Video Series Highlights Importance of Office Etiquette; Wackiest Workplace Blunders Revealed

TORONTO, Nov. 15, 2011 /CNW/ - It still pays to play nice at work, a new video series by Robert Half shows. The videos illustrate some of the most egregious examples of office etiquette faux pas, as part of the firm's ongoing video series, "Don't Let This Happen to You." The lighthearted videos, including "The Cupcake Caper," along with advice on avoiding common blunders, can be found at www.roberthalf.ca/dont-let-this-happen-to-you.

Robert Half asked workers(i) to recount the worst or wackiest etiquette blunders they've witnessed or heard about in the workplace. Here are some of the more memorable anecdotes:

    <<
    -      "While collaborating on a project, I saw an employee yell, 'Forget
           this!' and throw all the papers she was holding into the air as
           she walked out."

    -      "A colleague of mine would actually clip his nails at his desk
           while working."

    -      "A coworker fell asleep at her desk and another team member took a
           picture of her snoozing and sent it to the boss."

    -      "Someone was stealing other people's lunches from the lounge
           area."

    -      "A colleague purposely sneezed in the boss' coffee cup."

    -      "A coworker had a drink at lunch and returned to work tipsy. It
           was awkward."

    -      "After asking me a question, a coworker talked excessively for 30
           minutes without letting me get in one word."

    -      "Someone didn't get what he wanted and loudly hung up on a
           conference call."

    -      "I heard an employee screaming at a customer."

    -      "A colleague was making fun of other people's work in public."

    -      "Someone thought he put a customer on hold and then used
           inappropriate language within earshot."

    -      "Employees were walking around the office barefoot."

    -      "A person took a cell phone into the bathroom."

    -      "A person took a cell phone into the restroom while still
           talking."
    >>

"There are varying levels of etiquette offenses - but those that happen repeatedly show a lack of professionalism and common courtesy," said Kathryn Bolt, Canadian president of Robert Half. "Taking the time to make amends if you've inadvertently offended someone demonstrates your willingness to learn from the mistake, and can help keep your professional reputation in tact."

Robert Half offers tips on steering clear of some of the more common etiquette offenses:

Keep it 'PG-rated.' Salty language, off-colour comments and politically incorrect jokes can get you into hot water. When you wonder if you should say something or not, that's your internal voice telling you to zip it. Play it safe and watch your words.

Don't air grievances publicly. Harshly criticizing colleagues in front of others or gossiping behind their backs typically only makes you look bad. Address problems with coworkers head-on, but do it respectfully and in private.

Take a breather. Although coworkers may do things that irritate you, take a minute to collect your thoughts before raising your voice or firing off a rude email. Losing your cool will exacerbate your problems.

Put the tweezers away. It's called personal care for a reason. Confine your grooming activities to your home, or at least the restroom. The goal is to win over - not gross out - your fellow employees.

For additional etiquette insights, download Robert Half's comprehensive guide, Business Etiquette: The New Rules in a Digital Age, at www.roberthalf.ca/businessetiquette.

About Robert Half International

Founded in 1948, Robert Half International, the world's first and largest specialized staffing firm, is a recognized leader in professional staffing services. The company's specialized staffing divisions include Accountemps, Robert Half Finance & Accounting and Robert Half Management Resources, for temporary, full-time and senior-level project professionals, respectively, in the fields of accounting and finance; OfficeTeam, for highly skilled temporary administrative support personnel; Robert Half Technology, for information technology professionals; Robert Half Legal, for legal personnel; and The Creative Group, for interactive, design, marketing, advertising and public relations professionals. Robert Half International has staffing operations in more than 350 locations worldwide. Find more information at www.roberthalf.ca, and follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/RobertHalf_CAN.

    <<
    ---------------------
    (i) The survey was developed by Robert Half International and conducted
        by an independent research firm. It is based on interviews with more
        than 430 workers 18 years of age or older and employed in office
        environments.
    >>

SOURCE Robert Half International (Canada)

For further information: Nadia Santoli, (416) 350-2330, nadia.santoli@rhi.com

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Robert Half International (Canada)

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