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Etiquette Tips

By: Stephanie Niten

Throughout our regular daily activities, we use our etiquette skills in everything we say and do.  Now, usually when I say the word “etiquette,” not many people know what I am talking about.  So if you had a confused look on your face when you read that word, let me clear up the definition for you.  Etiquette is like the “rules of society” that we go by to help us interact with those around us.  These “rules” help us to be more aware of the people around us and their actions and feelings.  However, many etiquette tips have been pushed aside and forgotten by most people, so here are 5 etiquette tips that I think everybody should know:

  1. Arriving on Time- This is one of my pet peeves; if you are going to be late, then just let me know! I cannot stand it when people just show up late to events and don’t even call ahead to say that they will be late.  It is common courtesy to at least have the decency to call! My advice-always arrive on time! I know that there will be things that will come up that will occasionally cause you to run a little late to some events, but at least call ahead to let them know that you are on your way.
  2. Writing Thank-You Notes- I know that this sounds outdated, but thank you notes are actually essential.  They are good to use when you want to thank someone for a gift that they gave you or thank an interviewer for taking the time to interview you.  Thank you notes show people that you appreciate them and the efforts that they have made for you.  Since technology is so advanced in this day and age, thank you emails are also acceptable.   
  3. Email Efficiency- Even though email is a main medium of communication, you would not believe the number of people that do not know how to use it properly! A few quick tips: don’t overuse the high importance option, answer all of the person’s questions that you are emailing, do not overuse the cc. field, and try to get right to the point when emailing someone: nobody wants to sit there and read pages worth of information in one email!  
  4. Phone Manners- Not many people anymore use the phone to actually talk to people; it is mainly used for texting these days.  However, I still think that it is important to have good manners when those rare moments come when you do need to actually use the phone to talk to someone.  A good example would be when you know that you are expecting a call from an employer.  It is best to answer the phone with a pleasant greeting such as, “Hello this is (insert name here).”  In my opinion, a greeting like this is good for the start of any phone conversation.  It starts the conversation out on a good, professional note and it boosts the confidence of both you and the other person. 
  5. Table Manners- This is something that gets overlooked because most of it is common sense.  Children especially do not follow some of the basic table manners, and you don’t want to look like a child!  Some of these are: no elbows on the table, chew with your mouth closed, and don’t speak with your mouth full.    

These are just a few of the many etiquette tips that are important.  For more details on these and more etiquette tips, visit the Career Center website (link below)!  http://career.uncc.edu/students/effective-interviewing/professional-etiquette-tips#TOP

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