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Office Etiquette for Students

Home | Office Manners | Telephone Etiquette

The rules governing office etiquette with student workers aren't necessarily documented in any procedure manual they tend to boil down to common sense and courtesy. But as the college workplace becomes busier and more pressured, these guidelines are more apt to fall by the wayside as we try to find time to advise our student workers. Here are some tips to keep in mind when supervising students that may help:

The students must treat everyone that comes into the office with respect and dignity, from the college president to the freshman student. Never permit the student to engage in any actions that may embarrass people, your department or let  them make others feel uncomfortable in any way.  Office manners are very important.  Click here to view more office manner examples.

Don't permit public criticism or arguments. If the student  disagrees with an assignment or position you have taken, they should bring it up during a staff meeting or request a private meeting where they can ask for clarification and express their concerns.  You will then be able to explain to the student why you have taken such an action in a calm, friendly environment.

On occasion, be sensitive to the students' need for privacy if it is office related. For example: If you come into their cubicle and he or she receives a phone call, offer to excuse yourself.

It is very important that the students learn how to address people on the phone.  In addition they need to know all the workings of the phone system especially if they are going to be stationed in the outer office where most of the calls arrive.  Click here for more Phone Etiquette.

Don't permit cell phone calls in the office environment.  Let them make their calls outside the office on their breaks.  Click here for information about telephone etiquette.

Make sure students do not read materials, such as faxes, that are not addressed to them.

Make sure they have been trained properly and understand the office procedures you have.  It is also very important that they are clear about what their responsibilities are.  Attempt to keep them busy.

Make sure they understand how important it is that  every call and e-mail is returned within 24 hours.  That means it is imperative they get the messages to the faculty/staff that it was sent to.  Make sure they print legibly when writing messages and they know where the messages are to be left.

Make sure the students understand this is a real job and they are expected to work the days they are scheduled and are to arrive on time.

There are many more rules of office etiquette the list is endless and will continue to evolve as new technologies develop and protocols for using them are established.

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