Harris Interactive conducted the online study from May 14 to June 4, 2012. It included more than 3,800 workers nationwide.
While most people follow standard elevator etiquette of facing forward and generally keeping to themselves, quite a few workers reported less-than-ordinary experiences while in transit.
Workers shared the following real-life examples of weird behaviors they observed in work elevators: Clipping fingernails, fist fighting, showing someone a rash and asking for a diagnosis, moving the entire contents of a co-worker's office into the elevator, including the desk, and a woman with her arms full of papers using her head to keep the doors from closing on her, and dancing throughout the ride.
When asked to identify the most annoying elevator habits they see more commonly at the office, workers most often cited people talking on cell phones, standing in close proximity for no apparent reason and deliberately letting the elevator doors close when someone is approaching.
Top annoying habits include: Talking on a cell phone — 35 percent, not holding the door open when others are running to get on the elevator — 33 percent. (Incidentally, 16 percent of workers admitted to purposely closing the elevator door when they saw someone approaching.); standing too close when there is plenty of room in the elevator — 32 percent; squeezing into an already crowded elevator — 32 percent; not stepping off the elevator to let other people out — 27 percent; holding the elevator doors open for an extended period of time while waiting for someone else to get on — 26 percent; cutting in line to get on the elevator when other people have been waiting longer — 23 percent; taking the elevator to go up one or two floors instead of using the stairs — 20 percent; pushing the wrong button, so the elevator stops at more floors — 17 percent; facing away from the elevator door, instead of toward the door like everyone else — 7 percent.
For some workers, elevators rides are a source of anxiety. Sixteen percent of workers said they are afraid of getting stuck in an elevator due to a malfunction.