In general, I think it’s safe to say that our elevator etiquette is slipping. When did it go by the wayside? We can’t be surprised when Will Ferrell’s Elf doesn’t know how to ride - but what’s the deal with everybody else?
Basic principles. Hold the door for one another. Step back to make room for those disembarking and for God's sake get off when you get to your designated floor.
I recently had a disappointing elevator encounter while visiting patients at the hospital. Two twenty-something girls saw me heading to board the elevator and intentionally didn’t hold the door. Admittedly, I was a little emotionally shook before the incident, but their refusal to acknowledge me sealed the deal. It had been a long morning, and I was carrying lots of stuff. Among other things my tearful self was delivering fishbelliesto two separate patients. Not only were my arms full but my heart was heavy. In fairness, these two probably thought we don’t want to ride with this nut! I hit the up button from the outside and when the door opened I awkwardly hollered. ‘You guys are mean!’ Not my finest hour. Needless to say our relationship was never the same and the ride pretty somber.
A simple greeting in the elevator can change the entire ride. I once rode an elevator in a hotel with four others,our friendly conversation caused us to realize that each of us was taking it to our rooms to retrieve something we'd forgotten. We had a laugh about that. At the time of his exit one of the forgetful souls commented that he was flattered to be in such good company with the rest of us.
All in all it really doesn’t take much of an effort to abide by the rules or engage in pleasant banter. Together we can all make the ride that much sweeter.