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3 Questions On Civility In The Workplace Bet On Cut Above Fascinating Force-fed Facts Of Subliminal Tricks

Most recently updated on November 1st, 2022

What is workplace civility​? Assessment, examples, exercises, and importance of being respectful in the workplace

Did you know that you can change things and make your workplace more civil and less rude? How can you improve on your personal civility in the workplace?

We all know the importance of maintaining a professional appearance and demeanor at work. But what about being civil to our coworkers? Is it important to be cordial and polite, or is that just a waste of time?

Let’s go on a short journey to motivate and inspire you to take Porath’s workplace civility assessment.

Stress is the cause of over half of the 550 million workdays lost annually in the US (The European Agency for Safety and Health at Work) #workplacecivility #thextraordinarionly #workplaceharassment Click To Tweet

Civility in the workplace definition

Stress is the cause of over half of the 550 million workdays lost annually in the US (The European Agency for Safety and Health at Work)

Civility is defined as “claiming and caring for one’s identity, needs and beliefs without degrading someone else’s in the process,” according to Tomas Spath and Cassandra Dahnke, the Founders of Institute for Civility in Government.

What then is the best definition of civility in the workplace? Civility in the workplace involves cour­tesy, politeness, consideration, and respect.

Here are 3 best definitions:

“Being truly civil means doing the small things, like smiling and saying hello to someone in the hallway or listening fully when someone is speaking to you.” – Christine Porath, associate professor of management at Georgetown… Click To Tweet

“Behaviors that help to preserve the norms for mutual respect in the workplace; civility reflects concern for others.”

Lars Andersson, researcher and author

“Authentic respect for others, requiring time, presence, a willingness to engage in genuine discourse, and an intention to seek common ground.” – Dr. Cynthia Clark, PH.D., R.N. Click To Tweet

Read more on the “Ten Ways to create a more civil workplace” by Neal Woodson

Civility in the workplace exercises


There are several ways to exercise civility in the workplace. Are you using courteous language when communicating with others, both verbally and in writing? It is also important to be respectful of others’ personal space and belongings, as well as respecting their time by not interrupting them or monopolizing conversations.

Active listening skills are also key – giving others your full attention when they are speaking shows that you value what they have to say. Lastly, it is always helpful to show appreciation for the efforts of your coworkers – whether it’s a simple “thank you” or an acknowledgement during team meetings.

Civility in the workplace examples

Being civil, as opposed to neutral or rude, is linked to professional success, because its about how we relate to others. If you want your business to run smoothly and be successful, promoting civility in the workplace should be a top priority.

Ways to promote workplace civility

There are many ways to explore and promote civility in the workplace. One way is to create policies against harassment and discrimination. It encourages employees to treat each other with respect and courtesy. Moreover, they refrain from engaging in negative or hurtful behavior such as gossiping or making personal attacks.

Another way to promote civility is to provide training on proper etiquette, communication skills and how to handle conflict effectively and respectfully.

“Fight as if you are right; listen as if you are wrong.”
Karl Weick, The University of Michigan


Model respectful behavior yourself. Managers and supervisors modelling civil behavior themselves and taking action when they witness incivility among employees is key. By taking these steps, you will create a more positive work environment where employees thrive – which is good for your business as well as your bottom line!

Related: Book Review: The Genesis Principle of Leadership: Claiming and Cultivating Your Created Capacity by Richard Allen

Workplace stress costs the US economy over $500 billion a year

Civility in the workplace, diversity, and inclusion

Civility, diversity, and inclusion are essential to the success of any workplace. A lack of civility leads to a hostile work environment, which ultimately results in decreased productivity and morale. Diversity and inclusion are also important because they help to create a more well-rounded workplace.

How employers can participate to promote civility, diversity, and inclusion in the workplace

Some things that businesses should endeavor to do to encourage these values include;

  • providing training on cultural competence and unconscious bias;
  • establishing policies against discrimination and harassment;
  • encouraging employees to participate in activities that celebrate diversity; and
  • creating opportunities for employees from different backgrounds to interact with one another.

By promoting civility, diversity, and inclusion in the workplace, businesses will not only create a more pleasant work environment but also improve their bottom line. When everyone feels included and respected, they are more likely to be productive and happy.

Employees who feel respected and valued are more likely to be engaged with their work, leading to increased productivity. Additionally, customers or clients who see that a business is an inclusive environment may be more likely to do business with them. In today’s increasingly diverse world, it is essential for businesses to embrace these values if they want to succeed .

3 questions on civility in the workplace – How to show respect in the workplace #thextraordinarionly #workplacestress #mentlahealthmatters Click To Tweet

3 top questions on civility in the workplace

Here are three questions on civility in the workplace:

  • Is civility important in the workplace? Why or why not?
  • How can we be more civil to our coworkers?
  • What are the benefits of being civil in the workplace?

Let’s take a look at each question individually.

1) Is civility important in the workplace?

Civility is important in the workplace for several reasons. First, it creates a positive work environment that is conducive to productivity and innovation. A positive working environment is essential for employee morale, productivity, and retention.

because of a work environment that has policies in place against workplace harassment, colleague having a discussion freely

Secondly, civility fosters respect and trust between employees, carrying on to better communication and collaboration, helping to prevent conflict. Finally, civility demonstrates professionalism and sets the tone for how customers or clients should be treated.

How to show respect in the workplace

In today’s competitive business world, companies need to do everything in their power to promote a positive work environment that encourages employee productivity. A key component of this is fostering civility among employees.

When workers feel respected and valued, they are more likely to be engaged in their work and committed to their company’s success. Additionally, respectful workplaces are more likely to attract top talent as prospective employees seek out environments where they will feel valued.

Being respectful in the workplace

Civility also plays an important role in building trust between employees. Trust is essential for effective communication and collaboration – two things that are crucial for any successful organization.

When employees trust each other, they are more likely to openly share ideas and concerns without fear of judgement or retribution. This open exchange of information results into better decision making at all levels of the organization.

Furthermore, trusting relationships make it easier for managers to give constructive feedback without damaging morale. If we want to create a productive, successful business, then promoting civility in the workplace should be one of our top priorities.

an artwork of courtesy is king signage

2) How can we be more civil to our coworkers?

When we are more civil to our co workers, we create a positive work environment for everyone. We also set a good example for others to follow. And who knows?

Maybe by being more kind and understanding to those around us, we’ll help make the world a little bit nicer place overall.

diversified workforce embodies civility in the workplace and hungry for success
  • By making an effort to treat others with kindness and respect,
  • we should start by using “please” and “thank you” when interacting with them,
  • listening attentively when they’re speaking,
  • giving them credit when due, and
  • avoiding gossiping or spreading rumors about them.

3) What are some benefits of being civil in workplaces?

Being civil in workplaces has many benefits including:

  • Creating and maintaining a positive working environment as discussed above.
  • Helping to prevent and resolve conflicts between employees.
  • Showing respect for others and fostering better communication among employees.
  • Improving employee morale and motivation levels overall.
  • Promoting a sense of teamwork among employees.

As you can see from the points above, there are many good reasons why civility is so important in any workplace setting. So let’s all make an effort to be more courteous, respectful, and considerate of one another at work!

how to improve on your personal civility in the workplace

What are other benefits to being civil in workplaces?

Civility creates a more positive and productive work environment. When employees feel respected and valued, they are more likely to be engaged in their work and motivated to do their best. Additionally, civility helps reduce stress levels and promote teamwork. Of course, treating others with respect is simply the right thing to do – it’s good for everyone involved.

When organizations encourage civility in the workplace, they reap numerous benefits. A positive work environment is essential for attracting and retaining top talent. In order to create a positive culture, employers focus on promoting respectful behavior among employees.

By doing so, they will foster an environment where people feel valued and appreciated – enabling increased engagement and productivity. Also, reducing stress levels has a major impact on employee health both physically and mentally; this is yet another reason why civility matters at work.

Stress is the cause of over half of the 550 million workdays lost annually in the US

The European Agency for Safety and Health at Work

Can we be more civil to our coworkers?

First, we need to remember that everyone is fighting their own battles. We don’t know what someone else is dealing with outside of work, so it’s important to give them the benefit of the doubt.

Second, we should try to see things from other people’s perspectives.

It’s helpful to put ourselves in their shoes and think about how we would want to be treated in a similar situation.

Finally, we should always communicate respectfully. This means using language that is clear, concise, and free of profanity or name-calling.


In today’s workplace, it’s more important than ever to be civil to our coworkers.

With the rise of technology and the 24-hour news cycle, we’re constantly bombarded with messages that make us feel stressed, anxious, and angry. It’s easy to take out our frustrations on the people around us.

But when we’re rude or unkind to our coworkers, it doesn’t just make them feel bad – it makes us look bad too.

Its a wrap

We have seen several examples of respect in workplace. When everyone works together respectfully and cooperatively, it benefits both the individual workers and the organization as a whole. By promoting civility in the workplace, we create a better environment for everyone involved.

Which one have you decided to start working on today?


Importance of respect in the workplace

Civility in the workplace is important for several reasons.

First, it creates a more pleasant and positive work environment for everyone involved. When employees are respectful to one another and feel valued, it makes the workplace a more pleasant place to be. This ignites increased productivity, engagement in their work, and morale.

Secondly, civility helps prevent or resolve conflict and disputes among employees. If everyone is treating each other with respect, there is less likely to be an issue that escalates into a full-blown argument or fight. Instead, trust is build between coworkers.

Finally, civility in the workplace sets a professional tone and makes your business appear more reputable to customers and client, making a good impression. Civility improves productivity by fostering positive relationships and cooperation among employees.

How do you get a more perspective of your own level of civility in the workplace?

Take Porath’s civility assessment now to learn about your strengths and weaknesses. http://www.christineporath.com/assess-yourself/

What is your take?
  1. What actionable steps should you take to improve on your personal civility in the workplace?
  2. How can you change things and make your workplace more civil and less rude?
  3. In what ways can your organization can systematize civility in the workplace?

Share in the comments section below and on our socials!

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  • Choosing Civility: The Twenty-fixe Rules of Considerate Conduct, by P.M. Forni. Macmillan, February 28, 2002.
  • Andersson LM, Pearson CM. Tit[***] for tat? The spiraling effect of incivility in the workplace. Academy of Management Review. 1999;24:267-85
  • The Johns Hopkins Civility Project https://krieger2.jhu.edu/civility/

Research further using these civility in the workplace PDFs for additional reading.

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