Business etiquette has become the most popular topic not only for corporations but universities as well.
Last week I was the guest speaker for a MBA orientation program.
Students from around the world attended the session.
Business Etiquette for MBA Students
Business etiquette is crucial for university students as they prepare to enter the professional world.
Practicing good business etiquette can help make a positive impression, build strong relationships, and enhance career prospects.
Here Are the Topics I Delivered:
- Professional Appearance and Presence:
- Dress appropriately for the occasion and industry.
- Avoid overly casual attire, especially when attending meetings, interviews, or networking events.
- Grooming and personal hygiene should be well-maintained.
- Communication Skills:
- Use clear and concise language in written and verbal communication.
- Check and respond to emails in a timely manner.
- Use proper grammar and spelling.
- Listen actively during conversations and meetings.
- Always be on time for meetings, classes, interviews, and events.
- If you’re running late, notify the relevant person in advance.
- Treat everyone, regardless of their position, with respect and courtesy.
- Use appropriate titles and last names unless given permission to use first names.
- Avoid interrupting others when they’re speaking.
- Engage in networking events to build relationships within your industry..
- Follow up with new contacts after events to express your interest in staying connected.
- Silence or turn off your phone during meetings and classes.
- Avoid using your phone or other devices in situations where it’s considered impolite.
- Dining Etiquette:
- Brush up on basic dining etiquette for business lunches and dinners.
- Wait for everyone to be served before starting to eat.
- Use utensils properly.
- When introducing people, use the higher-ranking or more senior person’s name first.
- Offer a firm handshake, maintaining eye contact, when meeting someone for the first time.
- Respect the confidentiality of sensitive information shared in professional settings.
- Don’t share proprietary or confidential information with unauthorized individuals.
- Express gratitude when someone helps you, whether it’s a professor, a colleague, or a mentor.
- Send thank-you notes or emails after interviews, informational meetings, or when you’ve received assistance.
- Body Language:
- Maintain open and confident body language during meetings and interactions.
- Avoid slouching, crossing your arms, or appearing disinterested.
- Follow Instructions:
- Read and follow guidelines provided by employers, professors, or supervisors.
- Asking for clarification is better than making assumptions.
- Rescheduling and Cancelling:
- If you need to reschedule or cancel a meeting, do so as early as possible and offer an apology.
Remember that different industries and cultures might have variations in their business etiquette norms.
It’s always a good idea to do some research or observe the behavior of professionals in your chosen field to align with their expectations.
Practicing good business etiquette will set you apart and contribute to your success in both academic and professional endeavors.