Keeping a high profile in an office

Never write a note or memo if you can phone or visit instead; everyone wants to talk whenever you’re ready.

Don’t sit down to talk. The acoustics are better the higher you are, and remember that most people are a bit deaf so speak up louder!

Try to talk with _at least_ three people between you and your listener, so that they don’t feel left out.

The very best place for a conversation is in the corridor, beside someone else’s desk. If the corridor is full, try leaning against their cupboard or hanging over their screen.

Never warn people of your approach by knocking on their desk or cupboard. People love surprises, especially if they’re busy.

The best time to disturb someone is when they look thoughtful or are concentrating. It’s your _duty_ to give them a break now and again.

To make sure that _you_ get regular breaks, never use a “Do No Disturb” sign. When other people use them they’re only joking.

Always hold meetings around a desk. If you book a conference room everyone will think you’ve got something to hide.

If the phone isn’t answered after four rings, hang on. Someone will answer it eventually, and they might like a chat, too.

Never divert calls if you’re leaving your desk. Your telephone could get into bad habits.

Try to whistle, hum or tap your fingers while you work. It is a comfort to others to know that you’re still there.

If you have to design the office layout, remember to leave lots of wide-open spaces so that we can see and hear each other right across the floor.

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