Civility in the workplace is such an important topic! Atmospheres that lack civility are often toxic and result in low morale, less productivity, and a higher turn-over rate. Christine Porath’s book, Mastering Civility: A Manifesto for the Workplace, is a must read for any leader or anyone who aspires to be a leader.

Because the book references much literature written about the topic, it is a great resource for anyone who does not have time to conduct the research. Porath split her book into four sections. The first section discusses the problems that incivility can cause and the potential gains of civility. The second part encourages readers to reflect on how civil they are and suggests ways to improve. Next, Porath tackles how you can practice civility in your organization. An finally, the last section suggests ways to deal with incivility if you are the target.

Mastering Civility: A Manifesto for the Workplace points out many of the behaviors that have become common practice but are actually impolite, such as answering a phone call in the middle of a meeting. The real world examples made me think about behaviors that could be considered uncivil such as looking at your phone or scanning the room while talking with someone. After reading the book, I did self-reflect and think about ways to apply what I read to the workplace.

Michele Langbein, Ph.D., is a tenured full-time associate professor in the School of Business at Point Park University. Prior to this position, she was director of the Accelerated Undergraduate Business program at Point Park for six years, ending in Summer 2012 so that she could focus more on research and teaching. As the director, Langbein was responsible for program reviews/strategic planning, recruiting new faculty, supervising adjunct faculty, student advising, reviewing policies and procedures, handing student issues, and reviewing course syllabi for compliance. She is a member of several committees at Point Park including leadership, curriculum, strategic planning, outcomes assessment, and chair of search committee. Langbein currently teaches a variety of business classes including Quantitative Methods, Ethics, Organizational Behavior, Finance, and Leadership.