Whether you are on a commercial elevator in Philadelphia or in a busy shopping mall, it’s good to know proper elevator etiquette. Here are some quick tips!
You’ve probably been in this situation in: you’re in a crowded commercial elevator—Philadelphia has a lot of them. There are mostly guys with one woman at the back (maybe that was you). The old rule of women exit first makes for a super awkward situation: how do you make way without the guys actually getting out first?
As times change, the answer has gotten complicated: most workplace cultures are gender neutral, which means whoever is closest to the door gets out. Occasionally, it’s the highest-ranking person who gets out first. Lesson: figure out the corporate culture and follow it.
If you’re at the front of a crowded elevator, you can really push people’s buttons—in a good way and a bad way. The good way is to be proactive: hold the door open while people get on, and push the buttons for people who can’t reach them. The bad way to push people’s buttons, meaning frustrate them, is to forget you have this role to play if you’re standing right there. People instinctively dislike crowded elevators; by being solicitous, you have the chance to smooth the ride.
Lastly, should you talk on a cell phone in an elevator? Often you won’t be able to because the signal doesn’t reach. But in commercial elevators, in Philadelphia, anyway, that is rarely a problem. Remember that others in that space are a captive audience; your conversation is distracting noise to them. You can tell the person you are talking to that you’re about to step into an elevator and you’ll call them right back. Or you can whisper. Or if it’s a short ride, you can ask them to hold for a couple of minutes.
Remember, a little bit of elevator etiquette can go a long way!