Business etiquette covers a wide range of conduct in the office, with customers, on the phone (especially cell phones), in your emails, when traveling on business and at a business meal or event. Business etiquette is the one thing that places the small business owner or employee on a level playing field with a large corporation and its employees.
Business etiquette applies to:
- Meeting people
- The use of telephones, cell phones and email.
Tune in business etiquette basicsRegardless of the country you are in, there are universally accepted rules that apply to implementing proper business etiquette. For instance, when arranging meetings, allow enough time for everyone. Greet people with a handshake and a smile, practice respectable table manners at business meals and events, and promptly return phone calls and emails. Be courteous to everyone.
Etiquette Survival Guide at the Career Center at Florida State University offers a crash course in etiquette. Business Etiquette Training profiles companies that offer training in business etiquette.
Learn where office politics fitUnderstand the unwritten rules of an office. Listening well is a good quality. Be positive and willing to take on challenges and give credit to everyone who contributed to a project.
Ensure proper business etiquette when travelingRemember, etiquette applies to business travel, too. This includes maintaining the appropriate behavior and keeping alert because you represent yourself and your company. Remember, you are an extension of your business.
Be courteous on the cell phone and via email, tooThe dos and don'ts for business cell phone etiquette can help you maintain proper business decorum. Since business email is the property of the company, appropriate behavior and etiquette is required.
Microsoft Small Business Center offers advice on small business and cell phone etiquette. Also see the Brief Guide to Business Email Etiquette. The Telephone Doctor can help train you and your employees on proper phone etiquette.
Social skills are importantTo succeed in business today requires an understanding of social skills and the ability to communicate effectively.
- Remain alert to the people around you and with whomever you communicate technologically.
- Have the proper behavior, attire and attitude.
- Effectively communicate, listen and, to get your point across, be succinct.