Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Cube Dweller's Rules

I sent this out to my team today, after hearing some mutterings and grumblings. Likely my crowning accomplishment (at least work-related) for the day:

As we get used to working in a cube vs. office environment, I think there are some ground rules that we need to go over to make sure that everyone is comfortable and able to work efficiently.

* If you are on a lot of conference calls (or even just a few), please use a headset or pick up the phone. If you don't have a headset, please let me or Traci know, as she "inherited" some for us to use. The speaker option should not be used at all, even if you want the person in the next cube to participate in a call.

* As a follow up to point #1...try and develop a "telephone voice" so that your conversations don't automatically become topics for everyone. Even in our new offices way over here on the "dark side," you'd be surprised how much you can hear.

* Lengthy project discussions should be taken to the team room (2511--Traci has the key) and/or scheduled in one of the other conference rooms in Pavilion. It's great when an impromptu discussion turns into a productive brainstorming session. However, your brainstorming may be someone else's headache. Rooms can be scheduled via BookIt at http://xxx.

* Respect each other's personal space. In other words, pretend that a cube has four walls. When approaching someone, don't just barge in. Be polite and knock, clear your throat, etc. That way, if someone is in the middle of something, they have the option to ask you to "come back later."

* And, since we know that someone's cube is their castle, don't 'borrow' things just because you can see them. If you need supplies, please see Traci. If you're just being too lazy to walk down and get a pen from your own cube, then darn it, walking is good for you anyway.

* Please listen to radio and/or music with a headset. Just because you like Jimi Hendrix (and hey, so do I), doesn't mean everyone does.

* Also please be aware of "other" noises that might disturb people. Distraction can be found, according to an article on Cube-Ettiquette, from "gum-cracking, coffee-slurping, ice-chomping, pen-tapping and, most offensive of all, full-bellied belching. A cubicle is a public area, and those working inside should act as they would in any other public area. If you wouldn’t do it in a fine restaurant, don’t do it in your cubicle."

* And it ain't just the noise...smells can be bothersome too. If you've got a particularly smelly lunch, please take it to the breakroom. Oh, and try not to 'bathe' in your perfume or cologne.

For some humor, take a look at the Cube Dweller's Manifesto at http://www.clarkschpiell.com/home/cubedwellersmanifesto.shtml

And please, don't do this: http://www.executivegfx.com/cubicle.htm

If you've got any questions, issues, problems, death threats, etc., please don't hestiate to let me know.

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