As the world of business evolves from the rigid office environments of our parents’ generation to something more relaxed, it can be difficult to know which etiquette rules still apply. 

No matter what line of work you are in, there are business etiquette rules that remain the most important and necessary to follow!

Why Is It Important To Follow Etiquette Rules? 

Etiquette rules exist to help individuals uphold a culture of friendliness and professionalism, especially in a place of business. 

Without etiquette rules, it can be difficult to remember kind and consistent communication habits, respect for all occasions, and an overall tone of consideration across the board.

Consider these common work incidents: a member of your team has forgotten to replace paper in the shared printer, or a member of your team has missed an important deadline, which now impacts your workload for the day. Etiquette rules steer you away from conflict or sloppy resolutions and towards consistently effective and respectful strategies.

In addition, etiquette rules set an overall mood in the workplace. Everyone on board will learn to walk taller and speak with more confidence. Etiquette is a powerful tool to improve self-esteem and productivity at work!

4 Impactful Etiquette Rules You Should Never Break

If you want to improve your reputation at work, a code of etiquette will help to guide you in the direction of success. Etiquette rules are really just ways for people to enhance their self-awareness, become more professional, and grow more powerful and present while working.

Becoming more mindful of etiquette rules will make you a more valuable professional!

Follow these four etiquette rules, especially if you are newly entering the workforce or simply looking to enhance your identity as a polite professional.

1. Excluding Others

You might be surprised by how many times this goes overlooked: don’t leave others out. Of all etiquette rules, this one might be the most important to your business persona because with most businesses, interacting with others is a must. 

Challenge yourself to give eye contact and some form of verbal recognition to every member of a business meeting or project. Practice addressing groups of people, rather than just the teammates you are most comfortable with. 

And include everyone in workday lunch dates, relaxed breaks, and unscheduled brainstorms. Even casual conversations during the workweek are HUGE opportunities for you to show how much you value everyone on your team. 

2. Not Being A Team Player

When we all work together, we’re able to shape our futures for the better. Understand that nobody on your working team is perfect, but you can meld well with everyone if you focus on a team mentality. 

Acting as a team player means both passing and catching the ball. Help others when they are struggling, collaborate openly, and be flexible as often as possible. 

If you notice that others come to you seeking assistance, validation, or even confessing mistakes at work, those are sure signs that you have been a good teammate to them in the past.

3. Disregarding The Need To Be A Global Communicator And The Power Of Human Connection

This is one of the easiest etiquette rules to forget, as our world at work—behind the computer screen or pinned to a desk—can often feel quite insignificant. 

In reality, every person that crosses your path, virtually or literally, is in search of safety, peace, and health. It’s time to join those that have a deep understanding of human connection and realize that we have more in common than we think. 

For example, as we get to know our global partners, our projects are not a spreadsheet but an exercise in building relationships. Look beyond your work to recognize the human beings that are a part of it, and celebrate them every chance you get!

Related: Business Etiquette and Getting Back to Work at the Office

Bonus Tip: Be Conscious Of Nonverbal Communication, Too

Etiquette rules are far more than the things that we say to others: it includes how we look, gesture, and move around. The way that we communicate nonverbally with a smile or a wave can sometimes be more important than the words coming out of our mouths. 

Think of the last time you met someone for the first time. How welcoming was their handshake or their expression? 

Often, these are the things that stick in our minds long after an interaction.

4. Not Presenting Yourself Well Even Though You Are Attending A Meeting Virtually

While conducting business through a computer screen feels different in some ways, it should not impact the way that you present yourself as a considerate, serious professional. 

Even if you are dressed comfortably from the waist down, your posture, your visible clothing, and your grooming are all things that add up for the person watching.  

Pay attention to having a clean, prepared appearance. It shows that you care about the work you are doing, regardless of whether those etiquette rules are spelled out in your corporate policy or not. 

Every decision that you make to invest in the way that you look and behave builds more opportunity and respect for you.

Focusing on these simple etiquette rules will improve your confidence and sense of importance at work. It can also even lead to greater opportunities as people come to know you as a reliable, and consistently polite professional. 

Starting with these four etiquette rules will help you grow as a business person—whom others will want to emulate soon enough! Interested in learning even more about etiquette? Now is the time to invest in business etiquette training. 

4 Business Etiquette Rules You Should Never Break | American Etiquette