Work from home has become the new normal for most businesses today. We dress appropriately for virtual meetings, stay connected with everyone via internal communication channels and participate in fun work-related (virtual) activities as much as possible. These are some basic examples of business etiquette that help us maintain our professional attitude.

Read on to see what business etiquette entails and how we can use it for professional development.

What Is Business Etiquette?

Business etiquette is a set of social and professional rules that govern the way people interact with one another in business settings. Business or corporate etiquette is instrumental to helping advance in your career. It helps you show others the kind of values and belief systems you follow. Businesses are always on the lookout for individuals who can present themselves in a dignified manner because some may represent the organization externally. Whether it’s interacting with clients or convincing customers, your corporate etiquette can help you create a powerful impression. In addition to showing courtesy and respect to others, you demonstrate self-control and better emotional management.

Types Of Business Etiquettes

There are various subcategories of business etiquette that contribute to professional reputation.

  1. Business Meeting Etiquette

It refers to the behavior expected in workplace meetings. It prompts you to behave professionally and respect others’ time and effort. Here are some strategies to ensure proper meeting etiquette:

  • Always be on time; If you find yourself running late, apologize and sit down to avoid interrupting the flow of the meeting

  • Many meeting organizers send a meeting agenda beforehand to help you prepare and gauge expectations; go prepared for your meetings and follow the agenda

  • Pay attention to your body language; whether you’re presenting or attending a meeting, avoid creating any distractions

  1. Workplace Etiquette

How you present yourself to your coworkers, managers and supervisors affects your professional development. Workplace etiquette is the foundation of professional success. Here are some ways to ensure you present yourself appropriately in workplace settings:

  • Keep an open mind at work; be flexible to new ideas, thoughts and your colleagues’ diverse perspectives

  • Understand your workplace culture and the standard codes of conduct; try learning about existing policies and procedures

  • Oftentimes, we’re quick to judge our coworkers and engage in unpleasant discussions; treat everybody with equal importance and respect

  1. Email Etiquette

Good email etiquette can improve professional relationships and personal reputation. You need to follow certain principles to demonstrate good email behavior.  Here are some best practices to follow when writing professional emails:

  • Aim to reply to your emails within 24-48 hours of receiving them; you don’t want the other person waiting on you

  • Keep your emails brief and avoid using words that may confuse or upset the reader

  • Always proofread your emails for grammatical errors before sending them out; it reflects carelessness otherwise

  1. Telephone Etiquette

Phone etiquette is a way for you to showcase good manners and properly represent yourself or your business to others. Positive interactions create lasting impressions that are instrumental to business success. Here are some effective strategies to develop good telephone etiquette:

  • Try not to speak too loudly or too softly; ask questions (do you need me to speak louder?) to make sure that you’re audible

  • Try to answer you calls within two-three rings; in case you miss a call, immediately ring back

  • If you’re on a conference call and you’re not speaking, mute yourself so that there isn’t any unnecessary disturbance

Importance Of Business Etiquette

Business etiquette is important because it creates a mutually respectful atmosphere that helps you grow and enjoy work. Let’s look at some of the benefits of business etiquette in detail:

  1. When you treat everybody with respect, you strengthen your interpersonal relationships. People find it easier to trust you because you value their opinions and empathize with them.

  2. Good business etiquette helps you feel more confident because you know what to say and when. Customers and clients will likely feel more secure because you’re poised and exhibit professionalism.

  3. You’re better equipped to avoid misunderstanding and conflict because you separate your emotions from your arguments. You show emotional maturity and look at situations objectively.

Business etiquette ensures that you put your best foot forward and create a positive atmosphere for yourself and everyone else. Learn how to win people over with Harappa Education’s Practicing Excellence course. The Four Selfs of Excellence will teach you how to present the best version of yourself to everyone. The 1% Rule framework will show you how even the smallest adjustments can lead to better performance. Make everybody feel comfortable in your presence and leave lasting impressions on others every time!


Explore topics such as What is Etiquette, Telephone Etiquette & Meeting Etiquette from our Harappa Diaries section and improve social skills and develop professionally.

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