Business Etiquettes are rules and standards that help build professional relationships. Its goal is to create open and transparent communication between different departments and individuals in a company. Before entering the corporate world there are basic business etiquettes you must be aware of to prevent disrespect in the work environment.
Here are 10 basic business etiquettes that fresh graduates and business professionals must know.
There’s this saying in business, “5 minutes early is late”. It means that arriving in a meeting, interview, or a simple business update overview 5 minutes before the scheduled time is just as bad as being late. The reason behind this phrase is the fact that having five minutes is not enough to settle in and get everything you need prepared. With this, it is recommended to arrive 10-15 minutes earlier than the scheduled time.
Taking your coat off, drinking water before the meeting starts, restroom breaks, and introducing your team and yourself to other people present in the meeting place will take a lot of time. This will give your employer, potential clients, or business partners a negative impact when it comes to your commitment.
Once you arrive in the designated place, you should introduce yourself to the people inside the area. If you have a team with you, make sure to introduce your team one by one. This will allow you to have better connections and communication with the people you are meeting with.
When you come into any business related meeting you should observe proper hygiene. Having poor hygiene may prevent you from getting that job or having your clients sign those papers. Improper hygiene may be distracting for some people while doing business. It may cause delays, and worse, give off a bad first impression. It will give the impression to those you’re meeting up that you do not value the meeting enough to prepare for it.
Your wardrobe should be appropriate for the occasion. You should wear corporate or smart casual business attire for interviews and meetings. Wear casual attire in regular meetings if you already know the people you are talking to and they are not strict when it comes to wardrobe. But prevent coming in on slippers and pajamas for it displays uninterested behavior towards the person you’re meeting with.
Some people may not remember your name and you may not remember their names also. It is recommended that you write the names of the people you’re meeting with and check if it has the right spelling. You may also handover some business cards while you introduce yourself and ask for theirs in return to have better name retention.
The three R’s are very important for every meeting.
This includes calling the attendees by their name when you want to say something to them. Greet them appropriately and also make some acknowledgements when it is needed.
Respect comes in different forms. Talk to your colleagues and other personnel with courtesy and apologize whenever the need for it arises. Respect may also pertain with traditions that you have in your country such as hierarchy terminologies.
If someone from the group asks you a question, you should respond immediately. Making people wait will not just waste their time but also the progress of their work.
Interrupting someone when they are speaking may happen, especially if you are not aware. It shows disrespectfulness in their opinions. When someone is talking and sharing their thoughts, you should always take time to listen and wait for them to finish if you have something to say. If you want to be listened to when you are speaking, you should know how to listen carefully.
You may have an important idea that has to be said during the meeting, however interrupting is not an option. What you can do is write down that idea and share it to them once the speaker is done presenting, or giving his or her thoughts. When you accidentally interrupted someone from speaking, you must apologize immediately and tell them to carry on.
Listen to other people whenever they are talking. It could be a presentation, an opinion, a business proposal, or a job offer. You should be attentive enough to understand what they are saying and show your interest in their talk. You will learn from their point of view and they can learn from yours too.
You should avoid unnecessary conversations with other people during a business meeting. Your focus should be on the one speaking in front or on a long table. You should not engage in conversation that is not related to the meeting as it could delay work and show disrespect to the speaker. Getting distracted in a different conversation may lead you to miss out on important notes and might not be able to come back to it again.
Also, you should not say inappropriate jokes during professional meetings. You must learn how to pick out when and where to say your jokes. Jokes may be used as an ice breaker during first meetings , however make sure that it won’t hurt anybody’s feelings inside the room.
Eat and Drink Accordingly
There are times when eating and drinking is allowed inside the premises, but there are also times that eating has a designated schedule. Follow the exact scheduled time for eating if you are in a place where eating is restricted.
Always say “Please” and “Thank you” whenever needed. It displays courtesy and respect towards other people. If someone is serving drinks and food for you, it is always pleasant to show your gratitude towards their service.
Do not leave your meeting ahead of time. It is disrespectful if you leave the place in the middle of the discussion or when a superior is speaking. Leave on time just like how you arrive on time unless you have emergency concerns that need immediate action. Always inform the people you are meeting with that you are leaving or have scheduled an earlier end-time.
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