If there is one area in your workplace that receives more traffic than meeting rooms, work areas, or washrooms, it has to be the shared kitchen or pantry. You may wonder why this distinct area was chosen. For beginners, the office kitchen is where you and your coworkers commonly seek refuge once you’re off to take your latte and lunch break, and also when you’re beginning to feel a little stressed and need a spot to unwind from the demands of work and slow down.
Several employees appreciate the appearance of a communal space in an effective office environment where they can rest and take frequent breaks to battle the stress of working for several hours a day. But, all too often, employees take their office pantries for granted merely because their employers give them lots of such facilities. And so, when workers abuse this particular advantage, the outcome will not be pleasant, given that pantries and kitchens require constant maintenance.
Remember that the kitchen in your office is something you and your coworkers must assume responsibility for because you are the people who regularly occupy and use the area during office hours. All that said, there are some office pantry etiquette or rules to follow if you would like to make sure that your visits to the office kitchen are always pleasant. Look at the helpful tips provided below to learn exactly what you need to do to maintain your office kitchen in good working order.
1. Maintain decorum in a public area.
Because this is where you frequently share lazy conversations with your relatively close coworkers over lunch or coffee, it is incredibly easy for you to act casually in your office pantry. And it’s often in these verbal exchanges that people get sidetracked with their topic and become overly expressive with their voice volume and nonverbal cues. As a word of advice, always maintain proper decorum.
Remember that the office pantry is a common public area, so you can’t just sit back there and behave casually as if you’re just hanging out with your friends at home. It is considered impolite and unkind of you to take over a common area at work and act as though the entire space is your personal realm where you can do whatever you want. Resist enraging your coworkers by remaining professional even while you’re in the kitchen.
2. Clean as you go.
Most of us have already heard the expression “cleanliness is next to godliness,” and that’s something you should remember when you’re finished with your office kitchen or pantry. Even though your corporation has a housekeeping, janitorial, or cleaning service, you should not solely depend on them to clean up your clutter. You must contribute to the hygienic practices of your office kitchen so that it does not become a breeding ground for pests.
Light actions such as having to wash your mugs or lunch packaging in the kitchen sink are adequate to ensure that you are not making a contribution to any mess that may pile up in or around the area. Other useful tasks include sorting and getting rid of the garbage in designated bins; removing rotten or spoiled food from the refrigerator; disinfecting the inside of the microwave; and wiping down stained surface areas with a piece of cloth.
3. Be magnanimous with your delights.
Most people just love it when they can sample free food, treats, or goodies at work, so if you happen to have an abundance of food, do your coworkers a favor and share your bounty with them. Not only is this a great way to avoid wasting any excess food that you can’t eat, but it also helps strengthen your social interactions with your colleagues, who will appreciate the act of kindness.
Do you still have a big container of biscuits at home that you’d like to consider giving away? Is there still a box of pizza in your hands that you have no plans to eat? In those kinds of instances, all you have to do is leave the treats on display in the office pantry and inform your peers that there is something special in store for them.
4. Avoid Bringing Foods That Smell Strong
Bringing a packed lunch to work offers convenience and will save money by avoiding the need to buy costly takeout alternatives. However, not all pre-packaged meals are made equal, and some recipes will emit bad smells even if the food is innately delicious when eaten. This is especially noticeable when such foods are heated up in the office microwave, which is when the trouble begins.