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11 Tips For Tech Etiquette In Office You Need To Know

11 Tips For Tech Etiquette In Office You Need To Know

As tech invades more and more of our personal and work lives, it is increasingly important that you are aware of these tech etiquette in office tips.

1. Mobile Phone Use

Everyone talks loudly when they are on a mobile phone–fact. There’s no avoiding it, as noise on either end often makes being heard and hearing others difficult. Good tech etiquette in the office suggests that you should consider doing the following:

  • keep the call short,
  • move to an area where you will not be disturbing others,
  • arrange a call on a landline (better call quality means less shouting).

2. Social Network Use

Unless you are the social network tzar for your company or it’s part of the job, tech etiquette in office suggests that you should keep your social network use to a minimum. Find out about what is permissible by having a read through any IT policy and procedures. Take care to note whether your computer use is being monitored and limit social networking to accepted points in the day (usually lunch break).

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3. Surfing The Web For Fun

Leave surfing the web for when you are at home or on breaks. Surfing web sites that interest you may help kill a few hours, but it also can prevent you from getting things done. Avoid this distraction at all costs and focus on the task in hand.

4. Device Charging

It is bad tech etiquette to unplug a device that is charging for someone else. Chances are, you will forget to plug the thing back in and may cause your colleague issues when they are out on the road or in a meeting. Instead ask to swap the charging device out or hunt for another plug socket.

5. Instant Messaging Abuse or Misuse

Instant Messaging (IM) has become an increasingly popular way of helping colleagues stay in touch. Less formal than an email, it allows short, sharp communication that otherwise might have needed a phone call. Be to keep your messages short and to the point sure when you are using IM. There is no harm in having your personality shine through in your messages, but steer clear of waffle and joke messages as you are likely to get ignored by colleagues when you actually need them to respond quickly.

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If you receive a message, it is expected that you should reply quickly and succinctly–assuming that you are not in a meeting or having a person-to-person conversation.

And don’t use it to keep up to date with friends on the company dime.

6. Using Laptops in Meetings

Keep your laptop use in any meetings to a minimum. Only use your laptop for the benefit of the meeting and don’t start working on something else. If the meeting is focused and keeps to an agenda, there is no reason you should need use this as an opportunity to surf the web or respond to email.

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If you find yourself in meetings where you could be more productive elsewhere, do your bit and excuse yourself. Don’t start messing about with your laptop and distract others in the process.

7. Printer Supplies

If you happen to run the printer out of toner or ink, do not leave it for someone else to replace. Do it yourself. If you end up using the last of the printer supplies from the stock cupboard, make sure you tell or email the person responsible for ordering replacements. Don’t assume that someone else will sort it. Same goes for paper or if you see any unusual flashing lights on a printer (they usually mean something).

8. Large Print Jobs

If you are going to send a large print job to a printer that will clog it up for more than a few minutes, do this:

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  • print on a printer that is rarely used, so it will not be noticed
  • print at a time when others won’t mind,
  • print after you’ve given your colleagues a warning.

9. Work Email Is For Work

Don’t use your work email to keep in touch with friends and family. This is for use for work only and can help you keep a good separation between work and home life. With the proliferation of great email services available from the likes of Google, Microsoft and Yahoo there is no reason why you would need to use your work email in this way. Instead set up a separate account.

10. Bringing Viruses To Work

Easier said than done. Make sure that any computers at home have up-to-date antivirus protection and regularly scan any USB drives that might come in contact with both work and home machines. Better still if you can avoid it, do not use USB drives for moving data between devices; instead, use cloud services, as these have built in virus-checking to prevent you from inadvertently spreading viruses on these services.

11. Get To Know Your IT Policies

Spend some time reading the IT policies for your work place. Whilst there are common threads across most businesses, there will be some nuances that are particular to your job and working environment. Your employer is entitled to monitor your IT use if explicitly stated within policies that are reference by your employment contract. So getting to know what you can and can’t do may at least save you a little bit of embarrassment or it may save you your job.

Get in touch with me in the comments section if you have any other tech etiquette in office top tips.

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Published on September 20, 2018

11 Google Chrome Apps and Features to Help You Get More Done with Less Effort

11 Google Chrome Apps and Features to Help You Get More Done with Less Effort

In today’s fast-paced and never-ending busy world, we are overwhelmed by tasks that need to be completed by tight deadlines. With so much technology it is difficult to find the right tools to help boost our efficiency. And, many tools get obsolete so its essential to stay up-to-date to know when you will have to make adjustments to these tools. Independently of where you work, there’s a good chance that you have to be working on a PC or a laptop.

Do you are feel like you do not have enough time, or cannot accomplish much as of late? It is recommended to take a step back and look at the big picture. Also, you want to explore new and innovative ways to improve productivity.

In this article, I outline 11 features and apps within the Chrome browser that can help you do just that.

Minimizing Tabs

Let’s face it we all have more than a dozen tabs opened on our computers. One neat trick to still keep most of them open is to turn them into pinned tabs. On Google Chrome you can right-click the tab and select “Pin Tab” option. This turns the tab into an icon enabling you to continue multitasking.

Pinning a tab anchors the tabs on the left of your toolbar; a great benefit of the “Pin Tab” feature is that you can’t close these tabs accidentally since the “X” disappears after pinning them.

Incognito Mode

Google Chrome is a very easy-to-use and intuitive. But, Google does collect our browsing data; so to remedy this, you can use Incognito Mode. This feature does not keep your browsing or download history. You can enable or access it in three different ways:

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  1. Press Ctrl/Command+shift+N
  2. Select File Menu and choose New Incognito Window
  3. Download extension New Incognito Window

This feature is very handy if you’d rather not have your browsing history stored and utilized for future advertisement or suggested pages.

Save Webpages as PDF Files

Have you ever browsed interesting or important information and then forgot to bookmark or save it in “favorites”, making it impossible to find again? Chances are you have done this on a number of occasions.

Thankfully, there is an easy solution. You can save webpages as PDF files. On your keyboard, press control/command+p and you will be able to save webpages as PDFs.

Open Recently-closed Tabs

Ever had dozens of tabs opened and all of a sudden your browser shuts down? It has probably happened to all of us. You can easily recover all of your tabs using two approaches. Don’t panic if this happens because there is a workaround and solution for it.

One is by pressing Ctrl/CMD+Shift+T.

The other approach is to click on the three vertical dots on your browser and hover over “History”.

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Solve Mathematical Problems

Google’s Chrome browser doesn’t just search for relevant and updated information. It is also capable of performing some mathematical problems. Within the omnibox (Chrome’s address or URL bar), you can perform mathematical exercises.

For example, if you are struggling with percentages you can search 20 percent of x amount and it will instantly provide a result. Pretty handy, right?!

Play Media Files

Are you frequently met with difficulties when playing or watch a video files? Well, once again Chrome comes to the rescue. You can can listen or play videos from all sorts of movie or music files (mp3, mp4, .mov, .mkv, .ogv, .webm, .wav, etc.) by simply dragging the file into the search bar.

In addition, you can view images, PDF files and Microsoft Office files, too.

Navigate Swiftly Between Tabs

With all of those tabs opened comes great navigation responsibilities. Rather than clicking through every tab, you can use shortcut keys like Ctrl+Tab to navigate all of the different tabs. Also, you are able to navigate to the first tab by pressing Ctrl-1, Ctrl-2, and so on. If you want to switch to the very last tab, press Ctrl-9.

Stay Focus(e)d

Computers nowadays have awesome capabilities.

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Sometimes we like to get work done, but let’s face it, we’re all human. We sometimes procrastinate by visiting a website we really like, or maybe take a break with watching a flick on Netflix, a video on YouTube or browsing Facebook.

With Chrome’s StayFocusd extension, you can truly stay focused and get more done in less time.

This extension naturally helps you stay more productive by limiting the amount of time you spend on websites. You can set the time and it will automatically block those sites after a certain period.

Grammarly for Editing

Grammarly is a must have, and it’s really a complete powerhouse. Grammarly helps you check your grammar and spelling for everything you write online.

You can use it professionally or as a student, which will make the editing process much easier and more efficient. Furthermore, it can automatically check for typos when you send an email, type a Tweet, or post a Facebook comment. It’s like having your own personal copyeditor!

Loom

There are times that words in an email or written text in a chat app will just not convey the right meaning.

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There is a saying that a picture is worth a thousand words. Well, the same is true of videos.

With Loom, you can capture, narrate and immediately share video recordings of your screen, which will help coworkers understand issues you are facing, or to easily convey an explanation on screen. Plus, with video you will be able to easily walk people through a process, and you can use it to create simple how-to videos.

Chrome Calendar Extension

No matter what your level of responsibility is at your job, Google Calendar is another essential resource to have at your fingertips.

Specifically, you can have this extension added as an icon in the toolbar of your browser, which I highly recommend. Once you add the extension to your browser, you can check for upcoming events with a single click without leaving your current page.

Final Thoughts

Google Chrome has definitely evolved from its inception. As you can see you have a very powerful tool that comes as a free installation and is loaded with dozens of capabilities. The above listed Chrome apps can resolve some of the most common obstacles to your time management and productivity.

Featured photo credit: Andrew Neel via unsplash.com

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