Yes, it matters which fork you use! What’s more important? Engaging people so they’ll want a business relationship with your organization.
Business etiquette is a passion with me. A few years ago I was the keynote speaker at a state university’s Communications Day, an event for graduating communication students. During the Q&A many students asked about navigating the corporate waters. This struck a chord with me, and I shared my thoughts in an interview for the university’s magazine.
“Business Etiquette 101” was born. As managers, we want employees to start off on the right foot and have every chance of success. Yet lacking basic etiquette guidelines could stand in their way. Our business etiquette workshops were designed for new and newly promoted employees, yet we’ve had attendees from all levels and stages in their careers. “Business Etiquette” sessions are tailored to meet client needs, and we’ve adapted “101” for company managers reaching out to their local communities.
Especially in this economy, a company’s internal and external relationships have heightened importance. Every interaction can mean a business relationship acquired, retained or lost – a community relationship established – or an opportunity lost. I believe business etiquette comes from the inside out – our external “good manners” reflect what goes on inside the company. Business etiquette begins with how generations work together, how we work within the corporate culture, how we relate to our peers, “manage our managers,” run a meeting and communicate our ideas.
Externally, every employee is the “face” of the company and is its ambassador. You never know where the next relationship will come from. An easy familiarity with such skills as how to “work the room” and how to handle or host a business meal allows company staff to establish rapport and get down to business. Networks Business Etiquette workshops cover the spectrum… from email, cell phone and Blackberry etiquette, to public speaking tips, to what constitutes “business casual.” To schedule a workshop, participate in a Business Etiquette Webinar or develop a business etiquette component to your organization’s corporate training program, Contact NET