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  • Writer's pictureJ.Yuhas

Top 5 Boundaries You Need In The Workplace

While no two companies are alike one thing is for sure they all need boundaries for healthy workplace culture. Boundaries help employees feel less stressed, confused, frustrated, or even resentful towards other employees and upper management.

They are the core fundamental to respectful relationships, accountability of tasks, and accelerating growth within a company. Boundaries also increase employee satisfaction, engagement, and performance.

Is your company a place employees would write a positive review for?

If not...then you’ll want to keep reading if you want to shift your reputation.

The boundaries your company will establish all depend on the core values of the company and the type of industry you are in. Some common company values are trust, integrity, time management, transparency, and communication. And, to uphold your company’s core values it’s essential clear and firm boundaries are in place.

The Top 5 Boundaries That Play A Role In The Workplace:

1. Emotional

You may be wondering why emotional boundaries are important when most are often taught to leave their emotions at the door when entering the workplace. But, to be honest, a lack of emotional state management, conflict resolution, or privacy can create all kinds of downfalls in employee relationships.

The employee who vents about how much their partner annoys them at home, or is screaming and slamming their phone down after losing a deal, or abruptly leaves the office to handle themselves it, not an employee you want on your team. This individual lacks the ability to self-regulate making their emotions front and center of their work. This can become a distraction to other employees, hinder work productivity, and even lead to loss of clientele.

Emotional boundaries may look like:

  • Communicating needs concisely and constructively

  • Not emotional dumping onto others

  • Sharing inappropriate workplace dialogue

  • Not criticizing others perspectives

  • Self-regulation of emotions

2. Intellectual

Sometimes there can be too many strong-minded individuals trying to seek power or fighting for who is right or wrong in solving a problem. When this occurs it is usually because the employees are failing to listen to what the other party is saying and they are replying solely on the basis of their opinion. These types of scenarios create a gridlock effect and there is little respect for either perspective.

Intellectual boundaries may look like:

  • Listening without judging

  • Choosing appropriate workplace topics

  • Accepting others don’t necessarily have the same beliefs

  • Avoid denying someone’s viewpoints

  • Refrain from degrading others’ thoughts

3. Professional

When an employee walks into the workplace their mind automatically should transition from personal to professional etiquette. Upholding professional boundaries can look very different in various industries, especially in the work-from-home culture. An employee who is ill-prepared can be a downfall in closing deals and sustaining the reputation of the business.

Providing employees with a handbook on professional protocols is ideal in the onboarding process. This gives clarity to employees about what is expected from them in working at the company.

Professional boundaries may look like:

  • Communication and workplace hours

  • Respecting others space

  • Not accepting gifts or money as favors

  • Having integrity with deadlines

  • Use of inappropriate language or physical touch

4. Time

When it comes to business, time is money. If your employees aren’t meeting deadlines, holding up meetings, showing up thirty minutes late daily, or expected to work unpaid hours it’s going to trickle into larger problems. When the workflow is at a halt it’s costing your company and that isn’t a position you want to be in, no matter how successful the company is.

Time boundaries may look like:

  • Completely tasks by deadlines

  • Respecting team members time

  • Having time management skills

  • Awareness of workload limits

  • Communicating and rescheduling commitments in advance

5. Physical Space

Respecting others’ space can look very different for everyone. Some individuals are not comfortable with being touched, people entering their office unannounced, or even sitting so close together in the boardroom that you can feel their leg touching yours. Some people prefer to remain at a safe distance in professional relationships, as it’s an indication of the respect they command.

Physical space boundaries may look like:

  • Not touching without permission

  • Refraining from reading over someone’s shoulder

  • Knocking on doors before entering

  • Communicating you need alone time to process information

  • Acknowledging space look different between cultures, genders, and management

If your organization or employees are struggling with maintaining professional boundaries, please reach out and schedule a call to discover our boundary techniques to transform your workplace environment.


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