Professional Etiquette is a broad topic, and interest in it has become more widespread. I will start with four basic sections: Introductions, Networking, Communication, and Dining.
1. Introductions

As businesspeople, we are often in a situation where we’re introducing ourselves or making an introduction between people who don’t yetknow each other. Whether these interactions are in person or online, there are ways to make them more friendly and natural. It’s best to address the more important person first, whether that’s your boss, your client, or a senior elected official. Then introduce the other person to them. For example, Arthur Boss, I’d like you to meet Jane R. Jane, Arthur is president of the XYZ division. Add a comment that will facilitate conversation, such as I’ve known Arthur since college or did you know that Jane just started working here? When you’re being introduced make sure you shake hands, smile and make eye contact. Then add to the conversation as best you can!


2. Networking

Networking etiquette serves a dual purpose as we want to both fit into a particular situation, and also receive some benefit for ourselves. For networking to work it’s best to look and act the part. Dress conservatively at networking events, and be conscious of your body language. Stand up straight and keep an open expression. Make eye contact with those you want to speak with and then begin a conversation by asking a question or being interested in what they do. it’s not the time to indiscriminately hand out business cards. When you want to leave a conversation, simply extend your right hand to shake and leave with “it was nice meeting you”. Everyone is there to mingle and meet others.

3. Communication

Whether the communication is written, spoken or by text, you want to get your message across as clearly and concisely as possible. For emails, reread before sending and delete any extraneous information or generic descriptions. I suggest mirroring the writing style of the person you’re communicating with. For example, if they are formal, you want to be more careful with word choice and grammar. If they are more casual, you can write more conversationally. Always ask people how they would like you to follow up, some prefer a phone call, some like a text or email. Finally, it’s best to be direct when giving bad or unwanted news. If you find yourself in this scenario, procrastinating or downplaying can backfire and make things worse in the long run.


4. Dining  

Etiquette while dining has many facets and is something I have written lengthy articles on.

Business Etiquette Dining Table

As you’re sharing a meal and talking business it’s a more personal way to connect. The basics to remember about dining etiquette are wait to bring up the business discussion until after you’ve ordered; stay away from food that is greasy, sloppy or difficult to eat; keep used silverware off the table, and chew with your mouth closed. Everything else is secondary!