Everything you wanted to know about business etiquette


Humanity has long come up with the idea of playing by the rules. In a business environment, compliance with a set of norms helps people speak the same language, avoid ambiguous situations. The rules of behavior change according to the context.

The circumstances of interactions adjust their norms. Knowledge of professional etiquette is especially relevant at official events or business meetings.

What is business etiquette?

Etiquette is an unspoken set of rules for people's communication. Observance of the order of behavior in society determines the attitude of those present to a person. Norms of behavior in society have been formed throughout the history of mankind. With the scaling of the technical sphere, there was a need to establish connections between people.

Now it is difficult to imagine a world without meetings, conferences and negotiations. For such communication, it is important not only to be polite, but also to observe the order of formal communication. This is where Ethics into play. Ethics is a part of philosophy that helps to understand how to behave in society. Official ethics forms a mutually beneficial contact of people working on a common cause. Special rules are set for business meetings. Each participant has an official status and a specific task.


According to generally accepted norms, the meeting takes place in several stages:

• acquaintance, introduction to each other;

• discussion of the subject of the meeting;

• solving issues;

• end of the meeting.

Classification of business etiquettes.

Business etiquette changes along with the way of communication. It can be divided into:

• written;

• oral.

The second type is further classified into monologues and dialogues. Monologues are typical for conferences and product presentations. High-quality speech and competent text are able to win over listeners, increase interest in the product.

Dialogue is a more multifaceted sphere of contact. It highlights:

• small-talks — short-term communication of people on one or two topics;

• conversation — discussion of issues, exchange of opinions, making common decisions;

• negotiations – a conversation, the purpose of which is an agreement;

• interview — communication with media services in order to publish information.

These types of business etiquette can occur with or without personal contact. It can be a phone conversation or a video communication session. They also obey some rules.


The composition of etiquette.

There is not only a verbal type of interaction in the workflow. Employees communicate with each other in different ways. The culture of business etiquette is a combination of several factors:

• speeches;

• gestures, facial expressions;

• appearance;

• Planning the workplace.

The desktop (workplace) is the face of a worker. The order on the desktop characterizes the owner as a reliable professional. The reputation of an employee can be affected by foreign objects. The fewer of them, the more seriously it is perceived.

Until recently, the official appearance implied strict compliance with the dress code. Men had to wear suits, and women had to wear restrained outfits. Now the rules are changing, but modesty, neatness and grooming still remain in the first place. Of course, if one of the parties to the negotiations prefers following the classical style, then it is worth sticking to it too. You can come to negotiations with a Mohawk if the interlocutor wears dreadlocks and a nose ring.

In nonverbal communication, business style implies restraint of manners and speech. It is important to take into account the national characteristics of the other side. For example, Italians are very emotional, and the Japanese are the opposite. It is customary for Arab men to hug each other when they meet. It is not customary for the Chinese to say "no". There are many nuances. More than one international deal has failed due to ignorance of national peculiarities.

When negotiating with people of another nationality, you can learn a couple of words in their language. Such a gesture will definitely be appreciated.


Knowledge of basic rules of business etiquette is mandatory for all positions. It will help the manager to strengthen his position in a large company. For a novice businessman — in starting a business, in any city, small or large. Employees are interested in moving up the “career ladder”.

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