Workplace Rules that Drive People Insane

Workplace Rules that Drive People Insane

Regardless of the company size, management style and overall culture of the company you work at, you may have to deal with some workplace rules that can leave you shaking your head.

Rules are necessary, especially as a company grows, but that doesn’t mean they always produce the best results.

Dr. Travis Bradberry writes, “When companies create ridiculous and demoralizing rules to halt the outlandish behavior of a few individuals, it’s a management problem. There’s no sense in alienating your entire workforce because you don’t know how to manage performance. It makes a bad situation that much worse.”

Here are five annoying workplace rules

  1. Internet Blocks. Many employers restrict access to certain sites in the office. Although such blocks are often a necessary safeguarding practice, it can be hard for employers and employees to agree on where the line between acceptable end and unacceptable begins. People should be able to kill time on the Internet during breaks.
  2. Clockwatching Overkill. People are salaried for the work they do, not the specific hours they sit at their desks. When you ding salaried employees for showing up five minutes late even though they routinely work overtime or on the weekends, you’re sending a message of distrust, according to Dr. Bradberry. Allowing a little leeway will speak volumes.
  3. Banning Mobile Phones. For security and data protection reasons, many firms ban cell phones in the office, which can leave employees feeling out of touch with the rest of the world and according to Bradberry demoralizes good employees who need to check their phones periodically due to pressing family or health issues as an appropriate break from work.
  4. Impersonal Workspaces. Many organizations control what people have at their desks, placing restrictions on the number of personal photographs allowed and limiting freedom to rearrange desk space. Employees aren’t robots, allowing them to create comfort in their work environment will increase productivity and happiness.
  5. Limiting Self-Expression. No, you’re not in a private high school, but some employees take regulations on personal items and dress code a little too far with rules such as ‘underwear must be worn at all times’, ‘no illegal beards’ and ‘under 25% fluorescent shoes only’. When someone crosses the line, their manager needs to have the skill set to address the issue directly.

What’s the weirdest rule that you’ve ever had at work?