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Article On Elevator Behavior - Don't Talk Or Don't Stare?

Updated on February 22, 2013

The Appropriate Etiquette

  • When you approach an elevator, don't stand in front of the doors after pushing the button unless your plan is to be trampled as the door opens and people exit. After you depress the button, step to one side so people are aware that you are there waiting to enter and you are aware of whether people are needing to exit.
  • When the elevator opens, be aware that if there are people already inside, they will not appreciate you finishing a conversation with someone about where you plan to go to lunch--they are needing to get somewhere, so enter the elevator promptly.
  • If you are standing in the back of the elevator and you need to get off on the floor it stops at, be polite and say "excuse me" to exit the elevator. Note that many people will not know you need to exit and some people won't necessarily care because they are only focused on the floor they need to reach.
  • If you see someone is running to the elevator doors, be courteous and press the "Open Door" button so that person can enter. Afterall, you would hope someone would extend the same courtesy to you.
  • Once you enter an elevator, select the floor you need and then move to the back of the elevator so that when others enter, you are not blocking the entryway.
  • If a child enters with an adult assumed to be the parent, realize the parent might have communicated to the child that he or she get to press the buttons, so be patient and let the child have a good day.


Don't Look At Me

When you step onto an elevator, people are immediately not comfortable because everyone is standing too close to the next person's space. I am an annoying person to ride with because I usually say "good morning" or "have a good day." I'm not afraid to look at people. In fact, if there is a mirror on your elevator and you like to be aware of your surroundings, if there is someone riding your elevator that makes you feel uncomfortable, get off on the next floor and get on another elevator. When you speak, it eases the uneasiness. Just don't start singing.

I find the behavior interesting. People have the tendencies to stare at the elevator buttons that are lit up and if five or more floors are lit up, the uneasiness is prolonged and the lack of patience is effected. Sometimes people sigh, sometimes a rider isn't familiar with hygeine or the appropriate place for biological functions. The most commonly used phrase I hear on a Monday is "Well, it's another Monday," or "Do you think it's going to rain today?"


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