A guide to office communication

The office, a modern day concept that has been parodied by many. From ‘Smack the Pony’ to Ricky Gervais’ ‘The Office’, this particular environment has provided countless opportunities throughout the decades for comic expression, for reasons those of us who work in offices can undoubtedly understand. 

Our colleagues, unlike our friends, are chosen for us. We sit side by side sharing pleasantries; talk of of weekends, social activities, snippets of our personal lives shared within the strict confines of professionalism. Interactions with bosses and managers are cordial and polite and sometimes not, there is nodding and agreement and sometimes forced laughter.

For any of you who work for a company with an instant messaging policy, you’ll know the above to be a facade. The outward display of conformity doesn’t quite match up to with the bubbling, black-market communication that goes unnoticed under the surface : the very epitomy of the swan gliding across the surface of the water while its legs paddle furiously beneath.

So managers and HR personnel listen up, here are 5 scenarios that will incite inter-office instant messaging at a furious pace:

  • Accidental reply-all emails
  • Poorly-advised everyone@insertcompanyname.com emails
  • Christmas party vomiting and/or philandering
  • Inter-office philandering at any time of year
  • Basically anything else that will inject some kind of excitement into the drudgery of the day to day…

Perhaps that’s why office environments were made for comedy. Through the facade of professionalism burst human moments that become comedic beyond their proportions. Like the time my boss fell off her chair or when the head of legal played this video in a team meeting, the office set-up truly is a platform for comedy gold.


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