By Randy | April 29, 2009
Thanks to livemint.com for this:
1. Greet people, especially lift men, security guards, canteen boys,
cleaners. A namaste or a Hi is necessary. A little small talk won’t do
any harm. A former colleague, raised in the U.S., never failed to do
small talk with lift and elevator operators.
2. Greet colleagues in corridors, near the coffee machine, near the
photo-copier with a smile and a quick Hi. A “How are you doing” can be
3. Men: let ladies get out and into lifts and doors first. This is
important no matter what positon you are in the company. Hold doors
open. For an explanation of why, read the comments on the slide-show on
Obama. Men and ladies both: don’t get into lifts till all passengers
are out, even if you are in a great rush.
4. Desk mates, don’t creep into each other’s space. If your chairs
are close to each other, manoeuvre yours while getting up or sitting
down to avoid hitting your neighbour’s chair.
5. Don’t stare at colleagues’ computer screens or try to peek into their mail. It is intrusive.
6. Discussing the movie you watched yesterday while your desk mate is trying to beat a deadline is irritating.
7. My best interviews were those where editors walked me to the
office door, stepping outside their cabin to do so. It sends a very
strong message of sheer friendliness after a nerve-racking process.
By Randy | April 2, 2009
With the current recession, folks are learning a little bit about money manners – including how to give money to friends and family who are in need.
Giving money to friends and family in need can put a strain on the relationship. Here’s a great way to avoid that stress…
By Randy | March 3, 2009
It never hurts to review some basic table manners. Here is a list from Lori Piper:
Chew with your mouth shut. We all know this; we have all heard it as well as said a multitude of times. Could it be because it is the simple most important table manner to execute?
2) Do not be overly loud or a chatter hog at the dinner table. If you feel a sneeze or cough coming, turn your head away from the table and cover your mouth.
3) When a serving dish is brought to the table, place the amount of food desired on your plate and pass to the right.
4) No playing at the table. One day a friend, her infant son and I met for lunch. I played ball with him across the table while she had gone to the buffet-you know to entertain him and keep him from CRYING as he was in the separation anxiety stage. I was engaging in play at the table and that was not a good example to promote! We joke about it now, as her son has wonderful manners, but she was adamant about manners being important enough to start in infancy.
5) Soup is not a noisy food. Eat it quietly and use the side of the spoon.
6) No elbows on the table. Mabel, Mabel if you are able, kindly remove your elbows from the table. How many times did my sister and I hear that while growing up? To our dismay, not near the number of times, we say it to our children.
7) No eating food with your fingers. It is a difficult one to learn because so many of children’s food are eaten with fingers. French fries, pizza, chicken wings, chicken nuggets, bread, tacos, etc. Another good reason to start feeding children healthier meals. (So did not happen in my home- finger foods are quick!)
By Randy | February 23, 2009
Whether you are trying to park your car at an airport or at the local grocery store, it seems that parking lot rage is, ahem, all the rage now.
I took a seldom but necessary trip to my local Walmart yesterday afternoon. I was cruising through the parking lot, at a slow clip and in no general hurry to park. A car parked up and to the right was backing out. There was another car heading toward me in opposite direction ready to take the other car’s place. I knew they were there first, but I was already moving and I intended to just pass by it in search of another space.
Meantime, the other car waiting to get its place rushed ahead of me within just a couple of feet of knocking off my bumper in an effort to beat me to it. Oh man, that was irritating. I parked my car, walked by the newly parked couple getting out of their car and shouted, “hey, I wasn’t going to rush you for the space.” The husband who was a passenger in the car his wife was driving just gave me a kind of sheepish look.
Chill people, chill.
By Randy | February 11, 2009
In Europe, do not address people by there first names. Mr. and Mrs. are more commonly used.
Shaking hands is an important business ritual throughout Europe and Britain.
In most countries a handshake should be gentle. A firm handshake can show aggression.
In Asia, instead of a handshake a person will bow from the waist, and the person with the lower status bows more deeply.
In Italy and Russia, close friends will often greet each other with a kiss.
In Europe, men traditionally walk to the left of the ladies. They generally enter a restaurant ahead of the lady – to lead the way to the table.
In some countries, people feel comfortable standing closer to each other, when they are talking. It would be rude to back away. In other countries, like China and Japan, they want more distance between people.
In Holland, they always use utensils. Many Dutch even eat bread with a knife and fork!
In Sweden, you keep your voice down. Swedes are quiet people.
Americans like to whistle, when they are applauding, but in Europe it is known as a type of booing.
In Russia, whistling by women is unladylike.
In some parts of the Middle East, shaking your head “no” means “yes” and nodding your head “yes” means “no”.
In a number of countries, keep eye contact with the speaker is rude. They show respect by not looking straight at the person talking.
By Randy | February 3, 2009
Do you have a friend or colleague at work that has been laid off recently? What do you say without making matters worse? Read this…
By Randy | January 26, 2009
I found a great story on the folks who died during the sinking of the Titanic. Apparently, if you were British, you were polite and let women and children go on first while you waited patiently in line. If you were American, you elbowed you way on to the life raft.
By Randy | January 20, 2009
Did your guy win the Presidency? He didn’t? Before you go spouting off in the workplace about your political views, take a few hints from Entrepreneur.com:
- Foster skills for engaging differences. Politics is one topic that arouses strong feelings. But political discussions at work present opportunities to hear different views to which you might not otherwise be exposed, and to expand your perspective through open dialogue, if you believe you can learn from others.
- Consider the relationship when engaging in political conversations. To what extent does your style of interactions transcend “polite” discourse? What is your experience with each other in terms of debating different points of view?
- Focus on how you discuss the issues. Think about the way in which you voice your views. Talking about the issues can be stimulating and educational, but remember to respectfully disagree without name-calling.
- Be sensitive to power and positional dynamics. As an authority figure, consider the impact your point of view might have on others, i.e., how your conversation might be experienced as subtle–or not so subtle–pressure.
- Take time to reflect. Be willing to consider what the other person is saying and examine your own perspective, rather than just debate the certainty of your views.
By Randy | January 8, 2009
According to business etiquette expert Barbara Pachter, author of the strategic guide for increasing employability “When The Little Things Count…And They Always Count” ($13.95 paperback), you shouldn’t let a discouraging job market discourage you from searching for work.
“Clearly, times are tough,” says Pachter, “but that means job searchers need to be even more diligent. There are still jobs available and the professionals who are persistent, prepared and polished will have the advantage.”
Pachter offers 10 tips to help you land a job:
1. Approach Your Job Search As If It Was Your Job. Work every day at your search. Stay focused. Set a number of activities, contacts or connections that you make each week. It is easy to avoid looking, but if you do, you won’t find a job. If you keep looking, you will increase your chances of landing work.
2. Continue To Develop Yourself. Expand your skill set. Take a class, learn a second language, read. Volunteer in your community. Not only are you helping others, you never know who you might meet or what you may discover—maybe a whole new career passion.
3. Prepare For The Search. Have an up-to-date resume. Keep a log of what you have done, who you have met and any follow up actions you need to take. Practice interviewing with a friend and record yourself. You may be surprised by what you see. Have your interview clothes ready in case you need to meet with someone on short notice.
4. Make Sure Your Online Presence Is Professional. Some people use a blog or personal website to let prospective employers know about them. Remember that people have gotten hired or fired based upon what was in their blogs or websites. Your copy and photographs need to be appropriate. This is also true for MySpace and Facebook. And Google yourself to find out what future employers will find when they Google you.
5. Use The Old-Fashioned Approach. Yes, it’s valuable to post your resume on websites like Monster.com, use professional networking sites like LinkedIn, or to visit company websites to find job openings, but don’t forget offline methods either. I know people who still find jobs from the want ads in their local paper. Job fairs can be gold mines too. Don’t forget to tap into the career center at your alma mater–they often have great connections.
6. Think About Who You Know. Again and again, people tell me that they got their jobs from people that they know, so let people know you are looking. Build a network and look for ways to add people to it. If you aren’t already, get involved in your professional associations. It will keep you involved in your career, help you learn about job openings and allow you to meet more people for your network.
7. Explore All Options. If part-time or temporary positions are available, consider taking them. They can provide good experience and sometimes lead to full time work. Be open to a career change. If an opportunity appears in a different profession or industry, think about taking it.
8. Be Cautious With Unusual Tactics. Some people have tried walking the streets wearing sandwich boards to advertise themselves or wearing t-shirts that announce they are looking for work. These different approaches sometimes work but they can just as easily make you appear unprofessional.
9. Help Others. What goes around really comes around again, so help others. When you can, be a resource to others. If you hear of an opening that is appropriate for someone, let the person know.
10. Stay Positive. Looking for a job is a stressful experience even in the best of economic times. Take care of yourself: eat right, exercise and get adequate sleep. Don’t let negative self-talk take over. Remind yourself that you will find a job. It may take awhile in today’s economy, but it will happen.
By Randy | December 11, 2008
If you’re looking for ways to cut back this season, holiday tipping might seem like a logical place to start.
We checked with the Emily Post Institute’s Lizzie Post, great-great-granddaughter of Emily Post, to see if crossing the newspaper guy and hair stylist off your give-to list passes muster. (read more)