Hot answers tagged

72

Their solution is to use normal headphones and listen to music That would perhaps be fine if you just had an aversion to noise, and who doesn't, but given the impact that background noise has on you medically it's evidently inadequate. And that makes it perfectly reasonable to push back against this. If you already talked to HR about this specific issue, ...


64

Short answer: In general, no it's not appropriate in an office setting. While you may feel that the sound of your whistling is quiet and not displeasing, it is by nature a piercing sound that can travel a lot further than you think it will. It will almost certainly annoy your co-workers if done in your cubicle. You might get away with the occasional ...


52

Please do not try to drown the noise with loud sound on headphones, that will damage your hearing permanently... Providing a 'sensible' and comfortable work environment is up to your company, if your manager didn't solve it (I personally consider this a failure on his part, if I'm honest, especially if that is a known problem for his whole team), consider ...


41

That's one typical problem with open office culture. Someone's communication is someone else's distraction. So, let's analyze the situation: Someone requested you to change the level of your voice, and you were actually able to do that. That indicates, you could have started and continued in that tone itself which would not have caused any problems. In ...


34

He's 19. He doesn't have much work experience. Your role as his colleague is not only to help him to develop his skills but above all to teach him what is acceptable in professional contexts and what is not. Just ask him to turn it down since it's disturbing you. Explain to him that he can listen to whatever he wants on his earphones, but at a volume that'...


31

One thing I used to do was wear earplugs under normal headphones. If you get passive noise cancelling headphones this has a pretty significant impact. I did this often even if I didn't listen to music. I also talked with my team and told them that it was ok to "bother" me if I had headphones on so they knew. Communication around the issue is pretty ...


27

The problem with unspoken rules is that nobody knows they exist unless told about them. The whole situation might clear up with a simple: Hey, it's sort of an unspoken rule to have your machine on mute, or use a headset. The sound is distracting to your coworkers. Works doubly well if you either give them a headset (I'm assuming the company supplies ...


22

What should I do? You have several options. You could well take the interview elsewhere, some place where you can take the interview without issues. Now, if this is not possible, I suggest you tell them about this ASAP. A simple email explaining the situation should suffice. They can then decide if a better hour can be scheduled or if the alarm is no ...


21

Making noise that stands out from the ambient noise level is obnoxious. If you work in a mall, then no one will care. If you work in a library, then you will aggravate people around you. The break room at a typical office is almost certainly fine; people tend to chat and laugh there anyway. Whether it's okay in other areas (such as at your desk or in a ...


15

He has no idea what a nuisance he has become to you, so any idea that involves bringing in HR or his manager is overkill at this stage. There is going to be nothing more effective than having a quick, non-confrontational chat with him to the tune of "Dude, you're driving me bonkers the way you pound your keyboard...Can we find a solution that works for the ...


13

There are empty seats behind me, I could sit there, but what reason to give? How to justify it? Just do it. If this person even bothers to ask you, just tell them "I was afraid I might be disturbing you." This way there is no confrontation, and life moves on smoothly for both of you. Almost any other approach will risk offense, and could damage your ...


13

Ask management for a simple partition be be placed at the side of your desk because people going around the corner crowd your desk and it's distracting. This is a very sensible use of partitions - to create a distraction free environment (in relation to your field of view).


13

The marketing people in the area next to you are paid professionals at work. Disrupting the office with raucous laughter and shouting is not professional. I recommend politely and professionally confronting Team Noise. Better yet, consider asking your manager to confront them. You've already raised this concern with your manager, but in your proposed ...


11

There are empty seats behind me, I could sit there, but what reason to give? How to justify it? Chances are that you can just go a sit there and people will not be asking you for reasons why you did that. In case they asked, a simple "I want to try sit here, I like the change once in a while. Hope you don't mind". No need to provide further explanation if ...


11

Biology rules in this case. You can always get a heater or put on more clothes if you are too cold, but the options are limited if you're too hot, and that's how you can begin to approach it. I'm sorry, Dave, but it's just too hot in here for us. I'm sorry if you're uncomfortable, but you can put on a jacket or sweater while we can't do anything to cool ...


10

A lot of companies are moving towards an open office, and I have faced some of the problems you have mentioned. It is simply too loud for me as well to work effectively. You may talk to someone about your situation, but I doubt it will make the company as a whole go back to the previous settings. Lots of people will lesser work load and different ...


10

I think asking them to move will inevitably seem rude. However, you could still address the whispering issue. I suggest being up front. Explain to her that you have an hearing condition, and that you don't mind her speaking out loud. However, whispering is very disturbing to you. Then, ask her if it would be possible for her to stop whispering and use her ...


10

As others have pointed out, this is a young intern who doesn't know what kind of behavior is acceptable in the work place. He does this stuff because he's been allowed to get away with it. If somebody (ideally his boss) had confronted him about this behavior sooner it likely wouldn't have escalated this far. Hopefully it's not too late to nip this in the bud....


9

Please, don't take it personally, but it seems like you have some sort of disability (you took the trouble of finding a medical explanation for your condition). If you were missing a limb, you'd be provided with some assistive tools, if you were having chronic back problems you'd receive more ergonomic workplace, wouldn't you? I see the following choices: ...


8

Precariously balance a very expensive looking (but in reality cheap) vase or some other ornament on the corner of your desk. It is important that it looks: Expensive Fragile Easily knocked The trick is to give it the affordance of 'easily breakable'. Some people will notice it (consciously or otherwise) and steer clear, others will be clumsy and knock it ...


8

I've raised this issue with my manager and he agrees that it's a problem and he'll raise with the CEO. This is the correct thing to do. There's an issue, you raise it with your manager. That's all you should do. There are now three possibilities: There's a general agreement that this team is too loud. Words are had, things improve. There's no agreement ...


8

I would talk to your manager that where you are sitting is not conductive to your productivity i.e. people walking by and talking to you about what's on your computer screen. Ask for a privacy screen so that other people can't see exactly what's on your screen. Ask to switch seats with someone else to a less high traffic location. If your office allows ...


8

If your office manager has a condition that causes him to constantly produce noise, I don't see how bringing it up to him or anyone else will solve that problem. Noise cancelling headphones should do the trick here. A good pair will eliminate any outside noise. They are definitely worth having the ability to concentrate on your work without being driven ...


7

I had the exact same problem you're having once. My patience became very short and I felt like the noise was going to drive me insane. The solution was a pair of ear buds with rubbery tips. These work way better than even construction worker's noise reducing head phones (I know because I tried those first!). And you don't have to have the volume up much. ...


7

Establish shared office rules Rules of property. He shouldn't be allowed to take items that do not belong to him without asking. That is common courtesy. He also should not be allowed to mess with anyones work setup. Plugging/unplugging stuff may render them unable to work or at the very least annoy them. It could also be a security risk if he plugs ...


6

For me the key phrase is this : This means we have to keep our doors open, unless we have a reason not to ... You have a medical reason not to. It should, in principle, merely require you to provide evidence of this to your managers and HR to justify closing your door as a norm. This is the direction you need to take, IMO. I explain how noise is a ...


6

The first thing you can do with the Conference room suggestion is to leave a note on your normal table, either physical or on the computer screen (a screensaver) or both telling people where you are. You should also update anyone who might meet you during the day, or is likely to look for you, that you will be working from a conference room. On a more ...


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