iPods at work

Jan 08 2008 by Derek Torres Print This Article

Here's something to discuss around the water cooler. Is there an appropriate place for the iPod in the workplace – or should it be outlawed altogether? MacNewsWorld is the latest to weigh in on the debate.

Let's be honest – the work day can be difficult enough to put up with on its own. But like with all things, there is proper protocol to follow and people to respect, and when done properly, everyone wins.

Let's take our iPod, for example. Common courtesy dictates not playing it at a volume that others can hear. Don't listen to your iPod when working within a group activity. And please - don't play air guitar or wannabe rock drummer at your desk.

At the same time, your colleagues should also set some reasonable expectations for themselves and their own behavior. For example, don't assume that because a colleague is wearing headphones or listening to iPod that you aren't allowed to tap them on the shoulder and bring them back to reality due to any urgent social infraction they may commit while listening.

More importantly, by all means consult your colleague when something work-related requires their attention. Don't put it off because you thought "they didn't want to be bothered."

In cases of conflict, it's rarely the iPod that is guilty of affray, but rather problems of miscommunication and team imbalance that really may be the issue of the day. In these cases, iPod is simply bringing other weaknesses to light.