Business Etiquette: 10 Golden Rules

The culture and ambience of a company are created collectively by the different personalities of the people who work there. Proper workplace etiquette is cardinal to the progress of a specific venture. The way students maintain a disciplined disposition in school, employees should also maintain a professional attitude in the office.

Maintaining virtuous behaviour in the office does not mean that one should display righteous manners only in front of managers or seniors.

Employees often complain about their supervisors and say that they are using their managerial position to get things done ‘ Social media is flooded with memes which ridicule the office environment. No one seems to be satisfied with their jobs but are we putting any efforts to improve our business manners?

Here are some must-follow rules that will improve your workplace etiquette and help you in your jobs.

  1. Dress Appropriately for Work: Dressing appropriately does not mean looking beautiful or looking handsome with tons of makeup or having an overgrown beard. It means looking pleasing and groomed. Always opt for clothes according to your office dress codes. Wear well-pressed and clean clothes with nicely polished shoes. Groom yourself well to maintain a standard in your office.
  2. Arrive Early: Reaching early is not only applicable in the workplace but everywhere. It’s good to reach early rather than arriving late.
  3. Communicate: The next thing which is noticed in your personality is the way you speak. Communicating well with clients and customers is a necessity in any profession and position. Your approach while you are dealing with clients and customers not only shows your proficiency but also gives a peek into your company’s culture. Make sure to maintain healthy conversation manners when you talking with your colleagues and superiors. Don’t display rude attitude in any situation. You should not be too casual or too formal.
  4. Telephone Manners: Having good telephonic skills acts as a fillip to your professional career. Answering and making calls is an easy task but in a workplace taking a phone call also requires etiquette. Consider the situation below wherein you are supposed to take a call.

    Speaker A: Hello. Good Morning. May I know who is on call and who you want to speak to?

    Speaker B: Hello. Good Morning. ABC Company. Xyz speaking. How can I help you?

    In the given dialogues, Speaker A is using proper language but Speaker B sounds more professional. One of the basic things which you should follow while receiving a phone call is to greet the person, give yours and your company’s names and offer your help. Notice that Speaker A is using a casual and friendly approach. There is no harm in using a friendly tone but when you are making or receiving calls on behalf of your company, speak like business personnel. Always maintain a polite and helping tone.
  5. Email Etiquette: Writing emails is still a baffling task for many of us. The most important parameter while composing an email is to know about the nature of the content. Always prefer reaching a person directly if you think that the content is too lengthy and requires a direct conversation. Write the subject very clearly and it should match the body text. If you feel the need to introduce yourself and have doubts that the recipient might not know your email id, then give a brief introduction. Always write emails that talk business, don’t write personal or private emails. Don’t share anything which is against your company’s decorum. Proofread your grammar, spellings and other particulars before hitting ‘send’.
  6. Meeting Manners: Meetings are important part of the work culture. Meeting with people of authority gives you an opportunity to show your work and ability. Always reach the meeting room or the allotted venue on time. Be properly dressed. Keep your presentation material handy. Revise all the important facts before executing it. Greet everyone and briefly introduce yourself and the topic of your presentation or project. Always carry a notepad and pen to write the important points. Listen to each and every point attentively. Ask questions, if required. Keep your cell phone on silent mode while attending meetings.
  7. Showing Respect: ‘Give respect and get respect’, a simple mantra that humanity should keep in mind. It not only applies to the workspace but life as well. Respecting everyone is a crucial aspect of an individual’s personality. Talk to your colleagues, superiors, peons, helpers, etc. with respect. They are worthy of respect no matter their position.
  8. Language: Restrain from using abusive words or words which might hurt anyone’s sentiments. Never use words that denote racist or sexist behaviour towards anyone.
  9. Gender and Sexuality: Never favour or discriminate anyone based on their gender or sexuality. Work should be the only criteria to weigh anyone’s worth and success. Don’t use abusive language or touch people in an inappropriate way.
  10. Work Hard: The most simple workplace etiquette to maintain in the office is to work diligently. Always work with focus to gain your superior’s admiration. Set an example of an ideal employee.

We hope that these rules of etiquette will help you get success in your workplace.
Don’t forget to share these rules with your friends and colleagues.

Books that might interest you:

readimageLarge (1)
Business Etiquette and Professionalism, 3/e
Professional Ethics and Etiquette


Gurleen Sethi is a happy-go-lucky person, who believes in enjoying the little things in life. Writing is her passion and a great stress buster. 


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