Define Business Etiquette
Business etiquette is about more than knowing where to sit.
Restaurant image by RenÃ© Schulz from Fotolia.com
- 1 [Business Etiquette Important] | Why is Business Etiquette Important?
- 2 [Business Etiquette] | Importance of Business Etiquette
- 3 [Business Etiquette] | The 10 Basics of Business Etiquette
- 4 [Business Etiquette] | Advantages in Business Etiquette
Business etiquette is not just knowing what to discuss during a business dinner or how to address colleagues; it is a way of presenting yourself in such a way that you will be taken seriously. This involves demonstrating that you have the self-control necessary to be good at your job, expressing a knowledge of business situations and having the ability to make other comfortable around you. Poor business etiquette can cost you the trust of your workers and your customers, and the loss of valuable business opportunities.
One of the most basic elements of business etiquette is courtesy, or respect, which should be displayed to the people you work with, including your customers, no matter what. You should consider the feelings of others and address conflicts in a straightforward and impersonal manner. Raising your voice, using bad language and interrupting others is discourteous and shows disrespect for others. People who are disrespectful may find themselves losing credibility and the respect of their peers.
Show others that you value their work by taking time to visit and talk with them. This can include not only your immediate colleagues, but also people who work under you, such as secretaries and janitorial staff. These people can help you look more professional and will go the extra mile for you if you treat them with respect. Make time to actually talk to people; do not rush off immediately after exchanging greetings. You can also create a database of your colleagues and contacts, in which you list their birthdays, spouses names and birthdays, etc. Send a card or word of congratulations when an important event occurs in their lives. Such thoughtfulness will help you build better relationships.
Business etiquette involves communicating effectively. This includes always returning phone calls and emails. When calling or receiving a call, you should always identify yourself and your department, and speak in a polite and considerate manner. Personalize the conversation with a short question about the other person rather than rushing straight into business. This will help you to make a connection with your caller. When sending an email, use a specific subject line and keep the message businesslike and not overly personal or casual.
Dress and Appearance
Good business etiquette includes dressing appropriately. This shows consideration for others, and indicates that you take yourself and your job seriously. An unkempt appearance indicates that you do not care about yourself or respect those around you. When you are unsure what type of dress is required, it is best to err on the conservative side. For work-related social events, do not be afraid to ask what the dress code will be. Remember that even if you are dressing down, such as for a casual Friday, it is still important to practice good grooming.
Peers, Subordinates and Superiors
Good etiquette involves showing respect not only to your superiors, but also to your peers and subordinates; in other words, to everyone. If you treat everyone with respect, you will avoid making costly mistakes and experiencing discomfort by accidentally treating a superior in a disrespectful way. A consistently respectful attitude will also build your credibility within the business or industry. Showing respect also means refraining from gossip and from being critical and negative to or about others.
- Ravenwerks Global Ethics, Etiquette and Effectiveness: Business Etiquette – More Than Just Eating with the Right Fork
- Bloomberg Business Exchange: Business Etiquette
- Business Etiquette: 101 Ways to Conduct Business with Charm amp; Savvy ; Ann Marie Sabath; 2002
About the Author
Since graduating with a degree in biology, Lisa Magloff has worked in many countries. Accordingly, she specializes in writing about science and travel and has written for publications as diverse as the Snowmass Sun and Caterer Middle East. With numerous published books and newspaper and magazine articles to her credit, Magloff has an eclectic knowledge of everything from cooking to nuclear reactor maintenance.