Have you read Ann Marie Sabath’s
small book, “One Minute Manners,”
2007 Broadway Books.
It is a quick read with some interesting
insights on seven business related
politics and meetings
Let me share some that struck me
as being helpful.
Liked the suggestion about business cards.
If you are offered a business card by an
important colleague, and you do not
have any with you, as soon as you
can send one of yours in return send
yours in return with any results
mentioned in the conversation. This
demonstrates you wish the
relationship to grow. Plant spares
in several places.
- Two larger chapters that are probably the second
best topics covered in Ms. Sabath’s book.
Although business casual is common
for many American organizations, our
appearance sends signals about you.
There are also company culture
unwritten guidelines that point to
whether you are fitting in. My
impression is similar to Ms. Sabath’s
you never know what each day will
bring, so be prepared for whatever
Dress at least at your level.
- Several good topics are brought up
and some recommendations seem
Politics and meetings
Examples of professional behavior in
‘challenging’ situations, like overhearing
about a friend’s termination. Her
suggestion: see no evil, hear no evil,
- This is probably the strongest section.
Many traditions consider a thankful wish
or prayer before eating. She recommends
keeping it to yourself.
- a couple of dozen other topics many on
etiquette are nicely reviewed.
Being prepared is critical. Arrange to
meet someone at the event; bring
business cards; have a mental schedule
how long you wish to stay and where
you wish to go next. Plan to approach
three people, exchange cards,
acknowledge people you know and
leave when you plan or with who you plan.
- Variety of situations are touched with
Whenever you travel with others, be
prepared to pay the full tab and ask
for receipt. Have ample expense money,
note other rider information on the receipt.
- thirteen listed with a number related to air travel.
Bowing or shaking hands with Japanese
guests or hosts. Mirror your counterpart
and understand some subtleties.
Topics of conversation and how one positions
oneself reveals a common understanding of
Being on time is a strong sign of respect
in several cultures. (Germany, for example.)
- several others related to business meals.