As we all know in the business world, first impressions matter; and most of us spend a lot of time preparing for that initial meeting with the new boss, client or customer. However, after the ‘honeymoon period’ has ended we tend to become more relaxed and complacent around others and it’s easy to start losing that crystal clear image we once possessed. So, here are a few areas of professional etiquette that we should strive toward each and every day in order to maintain an exceptional level of professionalism in our work environment:
- Appearance – Pay special attention to how you look. Always be neat in appearance and hygiene, and strive to exceed your organization’s dress code. Other things to consider are eating at your desk in front of employees or customers…and chewing gum while you’re speaking with others. These seem like common sense ‘no-no’s’ – but a reminder is always good.
- Phone Manners – Although technology has grown by leap and bounds, your phone etiquette is still a significant component of professional behavior. Take time to identify yourself…and listen carefully by not dominating the conversation. Also, if you say you will call someone back – do it.
- Demeanor – Always be polite and well-spoken regardless of who is in the room. How you act and react are noticed by others and communicate just how professional you really are under varying circumstances. Strive to be more confident and remain calm – even under tense situations.
- Written Communication – Keep your letters and emails simple, understandable and concise. Be polite and somewhat formal in your communication, without being too rigid. Your style of communication with others says a lot about your level of professionalism. So, consider your words wisely.
- Organization – If you’re professional in what you do, then you can find what you need quickly and easily. Strive to be neat and organized…but if that’s impossible, at least know where things are so you can locate an item without digging through a mountain of papers.
If you work toward maintaining these five areas of business etiquette, then you will promote a more professional environment in your workplace. Plus…professionalism can be contagious. So, don’t be surprised if your see your employees and managers taking notice and trying to replicate the same professional qualities that they see in you. Have a great day as you go about marking your spot!!