Business Etiquette is there any?
Have you ever had that business situation or witnessed an event that left you thinking, “Really?” You’ve got to be joking! Has anyone looped you into a third party email conversation or forgotten that people can hear them when they are on the phone? What about those people on the train, in the quiet carriage, who have to shout to the caller ‘I’m on the train in the quiet carriage’, why don’t they just turn off their phones?? We’ve all had our fair share of bad business etiquette and I’m sure we’ll all guilty in some way.
Most people operate with an unspoken code of behaviour that determines expectations for social behaviour. While for some of us it is ingrained for others it just passes them by.
Your business or your exhibit hinges on how well you understand the importance of business etiquette. If it’s so important, why do so many forget it? We asked a few of our clients for their top tips on business etiquette:
- Keep emails short and factual. Keep things to the point don’t waffle, everyone is busy, and forcing them to sift through irrelevant information to find the point of your email is both disrespectful of their time and could lose you business.
- When entrepreneurs want to grow their mailing lists they head for the business card of the person they’ve just met and load them into their marketing list. Always ask for permission or extend an opportunity to opt out, it can preserve your business relationship.
- Always respect the time of those who help you, a small Thank You note or social media message is all it takes to cement a great relationship.
- Never send mass emails, not even if the first line is ‘sorry for the mass email’! The first place that will go is in the bin. You’ve wasted not only the time of the recipient you’ve also wasted your own.
- I love this one, ‘If you’re early, you’re on time. If you’re on time, you’re late. And if you’re late, don’t bother showing up.’ This may sound obvious but never, under any circumstances show up late. I totally understand that sometimes things happen that cause us to be late and within reason they are acceptable but when you arrive late don’t go on about it, don’t blame the traffic or whatever; the real reason is you didn’t plan for all eventualities.