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Old 12.05.2011, 17:10
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Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

So I work for a renowned Swiss company. I always give people i meet in the hallways a friendly "hello"-nod with a smile. Ive noticed that the people I have been introduced to nod back, but a lot of times people i dont know just look at me with a grim face and ignore my nod - leaving me feeling stupid and over-friendly..

Have anyone noticed this? This is a huge issue for me obviously!
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Old 12.05.2011, 17:14
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

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So I work for a renowned Swiss company. I always give people i meet in the hallways a friendly "hello"-nod with a smile. Ive noticed that the people I have been introduced to nod back, but a lot of times people i dont know just look at me with a grim face and ignore my nod - leaving me feeling stupid and over-friendly..

Have anyone noticed this? This is a huge issue for me obviously!
Carry on smiling, their conscience will kick in sooner or later.
I assume you are not dribbling or rubbing your thighs when you smile at the ladies ?
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Old 12.05.2011, 17:16
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

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So I work for a renowned Swiss company. I always give people i meet in the hallways a friendly "hello"-nod with a smile. Ive noticed that the people I have been introduced to nod back, but a lot of times people i dont know just look at me with a grim face and ignore my nod - leaving me feeling stupid and over-friendly..

Have anyone noticed this? This is a huge issue for me obviously!
Can you please post a picture of yourself, so we can advice you accordingly.
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Old 12.05.2011, 17:17
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

Don't sweat it.

If I wanted to greet somebody, I would say hello, by the way, just to make sure. Then most people are rather forced to respond (though not everyone does, anyways).
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Old 12.05.2011, 17:19
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

Don't worry about it. Just say hello and keep being friendly. In our office the only person who does not great the rest when coming/ leaving the office is never invited to the office eating outs He started noticing it and changed his ways!
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Old 12.05.2011, 17:20
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

Very common with some--not all---but if you havn't been formally introduced some will not smile/nod/acknowledge any friendly gestures.

I've gotten used to it, and continue to smile and say hi to these people, it's gets akward for them when I hold a door or something---now it's just a game for me. I'm so very bored.
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Old 12.05.2011, 17:29
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

Continue to smile also when you're in the Street.

Smile will finally win
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Old 12.05.2011, 18:57
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

You can always add a 'rude bar steward' as they go past. I admit I have done this once or twice when holding doors open. If they want to be rude then I can be rude back.

Not something I'm proud of but who do these people think they are?
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Old 12.05.2011, 18:59
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

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You can always add a 'rude bar steward' as they go past. I admit I have done this once or twice when holding doors open. If they want to be rude then I can be rude back.

Not something I'm proud of but who do these people think they are?
Yes, but even more effective sometimes is to say 'thank-you' very loudly.
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Old 12.05.2011, 19:03
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

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Yes, but even more effective sometimes is to say 'thank-you' very loudly.
Yes I agree. Sometimes I do a sarcastic 'you're very welcome'.
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Old 12.05.2011, 19:04
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

i second the "smile will win" quote. it has worked wonders for me!
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Old 12.05.2011, 19:05
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

Or 'and a very merry Christmas to you too'.
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Old 12.05.2011, 19:05
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

The same thing happens at my workplace, people even ignoring a friendly "good morning". So I decided to bring it up at the next "we are a cool company and all best buddies" thing, told one of the "high and mighty" that some members of staff were behaving this way. Maaaan, he almost had a fit, practically asking me to name and shame. The funny thing was that the culprits all did a 180° headspin when I said my piece...
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Old 12.05.2011, 19:23
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

Well, I somehow take a bit of comfort in knowing that I'm not the only person who has noticed a lack of returned smiles here.

"Toto, I have a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore..."
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Old 12.05.2011, 19:59
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

I started going to this dance studio 3-4 evenings every week since last September, I have nearly given up the friendly nodding/saying hello to people. I see many same girls in every same classes, every week.

tried to say 'Hi','Hello','Gruezi','Good evening','Hoi' , smiled & nodded.. everything. also when i was leaving i would say bye, ciao, tchuess.

I have had responds from less than half of them ...

sometimes I thought, 'is it because theres something wrong on my face or my voice is really that disgusting ?'
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Old 12.05.2011, 20:41
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

Interestingly, most people where I work will return a nod or good morning. Around where I live - which I don't consider to be the middle of Zürich, people you pass by will not initiate a "grüezi" - but they will return one.

In my parents' village in Yorkshire, people will always wish good morning / afternoon without being prompted.

Perhaps it's a big city thing. I remember on a weekend trip to Appenzell many years ago, Mrs nickatbasel and I arrived at the train station with large rucksacks and as we made our way to the B+B we had booked, it started raining cats and dogs. About 2 secs later a car pulled up and asked where we were headed - we mentioned the B+B and the woman driving told us to hop in and drove us there. The next day hiking up Kronburg, a group of teenagers having a BBQ invited us to have a drink and a Klöpfer.

Cheers,
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Old 12.05.2011, 20:44
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

Hello and a smile with the eyes, and keep walking. I don't wait.
After a while people get used to seeing you around and start to smile back.
Takes time, people here are quite reserved and shy.
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Old 12.05.2011, 20:53
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

The Swiss company I started work at when I first came to Switzerland was almost obsessive about Guten Morgen-ing everyone then Schönen Abig-ing everyone when they were leaving with a liberal dose of En Guete-ing at lunchtime.

Being the grumpy-first-thing-in-the-morning Brit that I am, I wished for long enough that they would keep a lid on it - I'm just not a springy "Good Morning!!" type of person. Now it seems, reading the above, I must have been in a rather unique situation.

As for the smiling and nodding, I don't think it's really a cultural thing here - they seem to fall back on the more formal "Gruetzi" or nothing at all. I tend to smile or nod out of habit but don't get too uptight if people don't always reciprocate. Also, if you are expecting it in the corridors at work, people are often preoccupied with projects, meetings or other such work so by the time they've figured out they are being smiled or nodded at, the moment has passed.
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Old 12.05.2011, 21:07
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

Quite a few years ago I worked in a bank as an English translator. I shared an office with one of the other translators and we got a reputation for being a bit "different". One day a guy comes in to the office and starts asking us for stuff without any greeting at all, just launching into his shopping list. I sent him out and told him to come in and start again. Which he sheepishly but dutifully did.

The next day I came in to the office and found a sticker on the side of my computer screen facing the door saying "Achtung bissiger Hund!" (In other words, beware of the biting dog). I got quite a kick out of it and discovered that the Swiss do have a sense of humour. It's just buried very very deep.
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Old 12.05.2011, 21:39
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Re: Friendly nod in office hallway - no response!

That's seems to be very common behaviour at our workplace as well. When I see clients or new faces in our departament, I always instictively nod (saying hello). Since it had similar effect as menitoned by OP above i.e. either it left me with friendly smile on my face or grin (made me looking silly). Soon I started adding proverbial "Grützi!" or "Hoi!" and the whole situation changed dramatically to my vantage point. Overtly friendliness might be misunderstood as notion of utter audacity, arrogance and lack of respect by some but not everyone. If blue collar workers go passed, then it is less formal, relief of easiness. But then every now and again you might stumble across a pompous buffon who wants to take over the world and then you need to bite your tongue. No particular rule there - me think.
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