Haydee Antezana explains why business etiquette is a vital skill for your career success
What does etiquette mean to you?
Whenever I’ve asked people this question, the responses vary from being polite, to having good manners, to proper behavior or courtesy. Others say it’s about knowing which fork to use at a business lunch or how to answer a business call. Although these aspects are all important, they are the tip of the iceberg.
For me, etiquette means knowing how to behave in specific situations with specific people. If you are in any situation where you have no clue what the right etiquette is for that specific situation, fall back on the golden rule: Treat others with the respect and consideration you would like to be treated. At all times, make people feel at ease and comfortable.
Does etiquette apply in today’s fast world?
Many people think not. Let’s face it, who has the time to be constantly aware of what’s the right etiquette rule to apply at that moment in that situation? I’ll tell you who…someone who values excellence and wants to brand themselves as the ultimate professional others can trust and work with.
In this crazy world of cyberspace, mobile phones, and video conferencing, a lot of common courtesy is lacking. If you want to add the human touch to your interaction, manners are essential. The appropriate etiquette for a situation can be your personal brand’s differentiating factor. It can make you stand head and shoulders above the rest.
A mastery of business etiquette can help even the smallest businesses hold their own against their larger and more high-profile competitors.
Here are the top 4 benefits of the importance of acquiring etiquette skills:
1. Projects Powerful Impressions
Within 200 milliseconds seconds, you are judged on the impressions you project. If you fumble through your self-introduction or don’t know the correct way to receive someone’s business card, others will question your professional level and your job skills. By observing proper business etiquette from the very first interaction, you suggest to others you’re a seasoned professional.
2. Enriches Workplace Relations
With its focus on respect for others, business etiquette can pave the way for a collaborative and civilised corporate culture. Abiding by etiquette principles ensures workplace relationships stay professional and that colleagues don’t blur the line between work and personal life, or allow their personal feelings to affect their workplace behavior.
3. Endorses your Personal Brand
Your, and your colleagues’, business etiquette is just as essential as the products and services the organization offers. People gravitate toward those who project self-confidence and success. Knowing the correct business etiquette guidelines will allow you to display more of these qualities and exude a powerful personal brand, so being noticed for your etiquette skills is a sure way to get your personal brand recognized.
On the other hand, a lack of etiquette will limit your potential, harm your personal brand, and jeopardize relationships that are fundamental to your business success.
4. Maximizes your Business Potential
Observing proper etiquette can open several doors to opportunities. Potential clients, employers or management will often judge you as much on your soft skills as they will on your business savvy or technical skills. If you are comfortable in a wide range of professional situations you will inspire trust more easily than someone who isn’t. And remember the saying? People buy from, hire, and promote people they know, like, and TRUST.
Adding the appropriate business etiquette to your internal and external customer’s experience is a vital skill for your career success as an admin professional in today’s fast paced world.