5 Common Sense Business Etiquette Tips

The other day I received a request to do a guest post from Kate Willson, an education blogger and writer for College Crunch.  Kate is very cool. She is passionate about providing college graduates with advice on how to transition into life after college. As you know, I am passionate about helping young professionals climb the corporate ladder.

Members of My Corporate Climb, my corporate career advice site know that if you want to create the life and career success you want and deserve, you have to create positive personal impact.

If you want to learn more about how to climb the corporate ladder faster check out the free rebroadcast of a webinar I did recently. You can find it at http://www.mycorporateclimb.com/squeeze_pages/13337-bud-bilanichs-corporate-career-success-webinar/

One key to creating positive personal impact is understanding and using the basic rules of business etiquette. I asked Kate for her best career advice on business etiquette. Here is what she has to say…

Post-College Career: Five Essential Business Etiquette Tips

Entering the workforce after spending the past four years at college can be quite intimidating. Indeed, college life is quite a bit different from working life, so it’s completely natural if you don’t feel fully prepared for all that the working world has in store for you just graduating college. In fact, when I began my first post-college career at an investment firm, I wasn’t sure how to act around my fellow employees, and I know I wasn’t alone; the truth is many college graduates don’t know how to behave in professional setting. If you’re a recent college graduate who is looking for or just starting a post-college job, here are five business etiquette tips to keep in mind.

Answer every email

I receive nearly 100 emails a day, but I always make sure to respond to each and every one of them, even if I have to say, “I’ve received your email and will get back to you as soon as I can.” If a person – client, coworker, or otherwise – sends you an email and you don’t reply, you’re implying you don’t find their email important enough to acknowledge, which comes off as insulting. So, no matter what, always take the time to reply to every email.

Never engage in office gossip

Gossip is an unavoidable force, so whether we like it or not, it will come up around the office from time to time. Does that mean that you have to engage in it? Absolutely not! Not only does gossip cause harm to the people involved, it also diminishes office productivity and employee efficiency. If you hear fellow employees engaging in office gossip, make sure to stay out of it. Even if you have to walk away from the conversation, it’s best not to inject your name or opinion into the rumors and whispers. This might be hard to avoid in the beginning, but believe me, people will respect you more for not speaking ill of your coworkers.

Double-check your work

Craft all of your work with the utmost care, whether it’s a huge project or just a simple one-line email. Read over everything for spelling, punctuation, and grammar errors and make sure everything is clear and concise. Each time you make an error, you come off as careless and unprofessional, and that kind of thing can hurt you when it comes time for a possible promotion or raise. If you take the time to double-check your work, people will trust in the quality of your professionalism.

Don’t abuse web-browsing privileges

Every employee needs a few mindless breaks during the day. Whenever I’m winding down in the afternoon, I like to read blogs, update my Facebook, and check my personal email. There is a fine line, however, between taking breaks and just plain abusing your web-browsing privileges. Remember, you were hired to do a job, not browse the Internet, and your boss probably won’t appreciate you updating Facebook throughout the day when you should be finishing your assignments. It’s okay to take a few web-browsing breaks throughout the day, but don’t go overboard!

Be the social butterfly

I’m pretty shy, so it’s hard for me to make friends. Whenever I started working, however, I decided one of the only ways I would ever be known and respected by my fellow employees would be to start socializing. I made it my goal to mingle around the office and get to know a few things about each of my coworkers. It was uncomfortable at first, but over time, I got to know everyone pretty well. Doing this has helped me become more comfortable to reach out to coworkers whenever I needed help on something at work or if I just want to grab a drink after work. Had I stayed quiet, I have a feeling that I might have come off as cold, which is definitely not welcoming in a professional office.

Starting out at a post-college job can be intimidating, so it definitely helps to know some useful business etiquette tips. If you’re about to start at a new job, keep these five essential etiquette tips in mind!

I like what Kate has to say here. It’s great common sense career success advice. What do you think? Please take a minute to share your thoughts with us in a comment.

As always, thanks for reading my musings on life and career success. I value you and I appreciate your continued support.



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