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Build Your Career Get Ahead

Want a Promotion? Mind Your Manners

Want a Promotion? Mind Your Manners
Credit: Woods/Shutterstock

Saying "please" and "thank you" could be the key to advancing your career.

More than 80 percent of employees said that being courteous to co-workers affects a person's career prospects, according to a study from the staffing services firm Accountemps. Just 14 percent of those surveyed said that having poor manners at work has no bearing on an employee's job outlook.

The research revealed that etiquette among workers deteriorates as they climb the corporate ladder, with 70 percent of those surveyed saying workers become less courteous as they move up the ranks of the workplace hierarchy.

Max Messmer, chairman of Accountemps, said workplace etiquette is about being aware of how your actions affect those around you.

"Time constraints and external pressures aren't excuses for bad behavior," Messmer said in a statement. "While it takes more than just good manners to rise through the ranks, displaying professional courtesy will only help your career."

The study discovered that open office spaces may be partially to blame for the rise in bad manners. Nearly 40 percent of those surveyed named using a speakerphone or talking loudly on the phone as the biggest breaches of workplace etiquette. Loitering or talking around a colleague's desk, eating foods that have strong odors, keeping a messy workplace, and setting the phone ringer to loud were the other major etiquette complaints employees have.

"Open office spaces foster better collaboration, but employees should make sure their actions aren't keeping others from doing their jobs," Messmer said.

The study was based on surveys of more than 450 employees ages 18 years and older who worked in an office environment in the United States.

Originally published on Business News Daily

Chad  Brooks
Chad Brooks

Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based freelance writer who has nearly 15 years experience in the media business. A graduate of Indiana University, he spent nearly a decade as a staff reporter for the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago, covering a wide array of topics including, local and state government, crime, the legal system and education. Following his years at the newspaper Chad worked in public relations, helping promote small businesses throughout the U.S. Follow him on Twitter.