Summertime in the Office

We’re having an amazing, warm, sunny summer throughout New Zealand. TCANZ is the first to admit that it can be hard to return to a professional mindset after long weekends at the beach, or that amazing family vacation. We did an informal survey of our board and put together a list of summer office sins to avoid.

Dressed for the beach or the gym

When we did our informal survey of TCANZ members’ summer annoyances, inappropriate work dress was first on the list. “Jandals at the office.” “Guys coming in from lunchtime runs or bike rides, standing around in sweaty lyrcra.” “You know that moment where a bloke gives you a flash of his belly because his shirt is too short after the holiday pies? ARRRRGH!” And we all wish that our colleagues who had bad luck with mosquito or sandfly bites, or who have peeling sunburn, would wear full-length trousers or sleeves.

Fish and chips at a desk

Fish and chips for lunch can seem like a harmless way to have a touch of summertime during the week. But they’re a beachside or pub treat for a reason. Unless your desk is outdoors, keep fried, strongly scented meals in your break room, eat them at your nearby lunch spot, or wait until after work. Surprisingly, someone also spoke up against salads, wanting them exiled to the break room, too. “The person sitting next to me is on a New Year’s diet and they crunch away at huge salads each day like a rabbit.”

Leaving too early

Speaking of after work, one of our blog writers says, “I once worked in an office near a marina where upper management, infuriatingly, left at about 2 on summer afternoons to go windsurfing together.” If it isn’t office policy to leave early on a summer Friday, wait until the usual time, even if surf’s up.

Endless holiday or family chatter

Yes, it is possible to talk too much about your fabulous holidays and romping with your kids and grandchildren. It turns out there’s a psychological reason why it’s surprisingly irritating – too much talk about peak experiences socially isolates you.

To bring summertime into your work breaks successfully, share

When we asked what gave office life a summery touch successfully, all the answers involved some kind of sharing. Asking a colleague to join you for a walk around the block or a picnic in a nearby park, bringing in fruit or vegetables from the garden, and one inspired department at a large company surprised the rest of their floor with ice blocks at their desks on a torrid day. Even our TCANZ member griping about windsurfing workmates admitted, ” I wouldn’t have minded if they’d asked me to go windsurfing, too.”

Please share your summer work exasperations and suggestions in our comments!

2 thoughts on “Summertime in the Office

  1. Kaye Churches says:

    The cold blast of the air con that means you have to wear winter woollies inside when it’s 29 degrees outside! (my workmates know who they are :-))

    • I can relate to you, Kaye. It becomes as bad as 48 degrees (in India) during summers, and my colleagues are in no mood to switch the conditioners to bearable temperatures.

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