How Much do You Really Know About Business Etiquette?

How are your etiquette skills? Sure, you may know which fork to use when you’re eating a salad, but do you know how to behave properly in the working world? Here’s a true/false quiz to see how much you really know about business etiquette. This comes from Time Magazine.

  • First, true or false: At a company party, you should hold your drink in your LEFT hand. This is TRUE. Why? Since most people are right handed, that’s the hand they’ll use for handshakes. So if your drink is in your left hand, your right hand will be free to greet people.
  • You should ALWAYS interrupt an angry client or co-worker to try and calm them down. This is FALSE. Go ahead and let them vent for a minute. This’ll usually relieve some of the tension. Once they come to a pause, say something like ‘I can see you’re upset. Let’s work on a solution to this problem.’
  • Also, true or false: Wine and liquor are smart business gifts. This is FALSE. Giving booze could send the wrong message, or even insult someone – especially if they don’t drink. Instead, go with a nice fruit basket or a gift certificate to a restaurant.  
  • It’s inappropriate to join a group of strangers at a business event. This is also FALSE. People attending business functions know that strangers will be introducing themselves, so don’t be shy! Besides, you might make a couple of new contacts.
  • And one final true/false statement about business etiquette: Don’t sit at the head or foot of a conference table unless you’re the leader. This is TRUE. The person who is running the meeting  gets to choose their seat first.

And that’s the 411 on business etiquette.

Comment on this story