Here a few business etiquette tips that will help you in your work life to achieve a certain level of professionalism:
- Turn off your gadget in meetings: When all phones & other distractions are turned off, people concentrate better on the meeting agenda, making the meetings more productive. Needless to say; it is disrespectful and unprofessional to have your phone ring right in the middle of a meeting. It doesn’t matter if the meeting is with your subordinates or superiors.
- Arrive at meetings punctually: This applies to physical or virtual meetings. If you are the host, it is advisable that you are at least 5minutes early and for a guest; right on time is appropriate. If for whatever reason you are running late, an e-mail or a phone call to the other party is necessary to avoid having them feel stood up.
- Bring your manners for business meals: When invited, do not go with co-workers except it is explicitly stated. During the meal, avoid making the conversation all about you; try to involve other business associates. Also, be careful with your alcohol intake; you don’t want to be caught having drunken business conversations.
- Express gratitude: “Thank you” notes for a job well done, business well executed, a signed contract…etc go a long way in sustaining healthy business relationships with colleagues or clients. This could be in form of a handwritten note or concise e-mail.
- Seek permission before inviting your ‘significant other’ to a business or work related function: It’s best to get clarification from the host rather than assume. It’s absolutely necessary to take into consideration the company’s plan or budget. It could also be an awkward situation for your partner; showing up for an event that is meant only for staff.
- Be careful of what you write in official e-mails: If you are not comfortable with the information being broadcast to the entire organization, then do not use the official e-mail. Many people share jokes or personal information with their colleagues via e-mail, thinking that it’s confidential. But they forget that the office IT staff sees everything and the likelihood of that information being leaked someday is very high. It may be unprofessional for them to share such information, but it’s best to be safe than sorry.