Business development 19 February 2018

Nine business etiquette mistakes you don’t know you are making

Even if you’re using the phone for work, you risk making it look as though you are distracted
Navigating social etiquette is part of everyday life. But in business, avoiding faux pas can be even more important. Here, BlueGlass’s Irmahunkeler highlights the business etiquette mistakes you could be guilty of making.

In the world of business, etiquette is crucial. Knowing how to behave in an important meeting ensures you don’t put any noses out of joint and make yourself look more than a little foolish. But an etiquette faux pas can have much more serious implications.

Significant social slips that unwittingly cause offence can have big knock-on effects: the failure to close a deal, say, or the diminishing of a previously strong business relationship.

We are often told that manners cost nothing, yet time and time again even the most experienced of businesspeople trip up when it comes to etiquette from something that’s banal to something that could cause gross offence.

To ensure this doesnt happen to you, here are nine business etiquette mistakes you don’t know you are making that you can quickly remedy.

  1. Being good at broad-brush, but bad at detail

If you think going into a meeting with a couple of headline statements will suffice, think again. According to this global etiquette guide from travel experts Expedia, not being able to back-up any claims with facts and figures is often a big no-no.

Ensure you’re primed with all the information you need, so if you do get tested on the nitty-gritty, youll know exactly what to say.

  1. Expecting everything to run on time

In an ideal world, wed always get up for work on time, our train wouldnt be late and we wouldnt trip up on a banana skin on the way in. Sadly real life isnt like that.

And, while wed all like it if meetings started and finished as planned, some things can’t be helped employees might be off sick or late, prior meetings might be running over, someone might have even double-booked. It happens, and your reaction is important. Make contingency plans and react graciously to hurdles and changes in circumstance.

  1. Getting straight down to business

The etiquette guide from Expedia shows that, in many countries, it’s perfectly normal for business meetings to start off talking about everything but business. Small talk is often seen as a natural conversation starter and the common precursor to more serious negotiations. So don’t go in thinking you need to launch into your pitch – take your time and relax.?



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  1. Not following up

After a meeting is finished, do you just go back to your desk and forget about it? If so, you’re making a big etiquette mistake. Manners cost nothing, so failing to send something as simple as a thank-you message can make you look rude.

Post-meeting, take a few minutes to send a quick note thanking attendees for their time as well as any action points from the meeting.

  1. Too much, too soon


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