Business Etiquette – Common Sense?
Business etiquette is critical if you expect to be taken seriously. I think it’s common sense but, apparently, common sense isn’t so common. Recently I’ve been experiencing (and hearing about) a lot of interaction (or lack thereof) with people who say they’re interested in a business relationship but have a funny way of showing it.
So what, exactly, is happening? Here’s the short list:
I get that not everybody’s in front of their computer all the time. I get people in business are out of the office a lot. What I don’t get is when an email requiring a response doesn’t get one. Even just a, “Hey. I got your email and will get back to you as soon as I can.”
Technology isn’t without its flaws. Certainly, follow-up is in order to make sure an email’s been received. Once done, doesn’t business etiquette dictate some kind of response?
Responding to RSVPs
Especially with electronic invitations, how easy is it to click the yes or no button? Yes or no, the person extending the invitation needs to know if you’ll be attending to finalize plans and make preparations.
Once you’ve said you’ll be attending an event, what happens if you don’t show up? Who’s impacted? What’s the message the “no-show” is sending? I don’t know about you, but want my word to mean something. If I can’t attend, at least I let the host know in advance. Wouldn’t you want to know?
Becoming a member of a group sets an expectation for involvement. During meeting discussions, members are expected to participate. It means showing up and contributing. If a member doesn’t commit to even a minimal level of involvement, how is the group benefiting? How is the member benefiting? If you’re not going to play full on, don’t join.
I have a colleague who belongs to a group where members get together in small groups between meetings to get to know each other and learn about each other’s businesses. Members of these small groups agreed to time and place for the gathering, but at meeting time didn’t show.
I’m by no means perfect and I make my share of mistakes. But I follow through when I say I’m going to do something. I show up when I say I will. If I’m a member of a group, I contribute in any way I can. Any other way is a waste of my time, energy, and money.
It just doesn’t seem so hard to me to apply business etiquette to everything you do with clients, customers, colleagues, and vendors.
Am I expecting too much?