Ever wondered what importance etiquettes are in your day-to-day life? Today, to be social and interactive is given much importance. Everyone, be it a working professional or entrepreneur, life revolves around networking. What gives you that special edge over others is your mannerisms and etiquette.
How do you define etiquette consulting? Etiquette consulting deals with your social behavioural patterns. Image consulting, on the other hand, encompasses shaping up of your image and branding yourself, uplifting yourself in terms of style, colour palette and touches a bit of mannerisms. It does touch upon a bit of communications. Somewhere we all need to mind our manners. Protocols are a part of etiquette. We always say, “But she should have said this, she should have done this.”
A condolence meet, an interview
“It is important to understand basic etiquettes like what to say during a condolence meet, an interview, meeting dignitaries. These are all part of etiquettes,” says Ritu Agarwal, etiquette consultant who runs Rush Lifestyle in Kolkata training her clients travelling across 24 countries.
Etiquettes are imbibed in everyone, they are part of each culture though one culture is different from the other. This is where etiquette consulting comes in. When it comes to travelling abroad on work, it is important to understand the culture of that place as etiquettes that might be acceptable in one culture might not be acceptable in another.
It is all about creating a lasting impression in a few minutes during a meeting or a conference or if you are abroad as a student or on work for a few years. Understanding the culture would help you embrace it and blend into the environment away from home. Offending someone without realizing and apologizing later might not go down too well with some people you interact with, especially in a professional environment.
Every sect of society follows a different culture. Good manners are culturally bound. What is good manners for you is bound for you. What is deemed right in one country may be very wrong in another. Decorum, elegance, societal savoir faire and a cosmopolitan view uniquely distinguish you in what you do. A return to traditional values has placed the word ‘etiquette’ back in the vocabulary.
For some, the idea of social niceties and proper protocols may seem prim and old fashioned for the fast paced world, where we live and do business. But forward thinkers and the globally sophisticated know that good manners always stand out. Moreover, they recognize that good manners are cultural.
An etiquette consultant brings you first hand experience helping you become more poised and polished in your private and social life. Take your social success to the next level while travelling around the world. Etiquette counts a lot in your professional life. The sophisticated professional must know how to distinguish himself or herself from the competition, develop and maintain business, project a positive and respectful image, project confidence in authority and build team work in a multi-cultural environment.
Etiquette and protocol intelligence will propel an international executive to world class status, allowing you to increase your ability to work in a global environment by communicating with more sensitivity, minimizing language barriers and better interpreting audiences, thereby tipping the scales in your favour.
How to avoid embarrassment
During George W Bush’s visit to Canberra in Australia in 1992, he made a faux pas showing the victory sign with the back of his hand facing a group of locals he drove past and that was enough damage done. The sign might mean victory in the USA, but it is a derogatory sign equivalent to raising the middle finger in the USA. Another incident is when America’s first lady Michelle Obama embraced the Queen of England in hug which shocked the British media, as protocol only permits a mild handshake with the Queen.
Be it anyone, working on basic etiquettes goes a long way in avoiding embarrassment. “The market is huge. India being a developing culture where we are still stuck up between our old value system, trying to embrace the new value system which has come from the West, we are still trying to find a foothold, trying to do the right thing in terms of behaviour and mannerisms. This gives me more scope as an etiquette consultant”, says Ritu Agarwal.
A good etiquette consultant sees that the job is done well. Coming well within time, it helps to see you can handle yourself well in another country. From greetings, to gift giving, depending on the intensity of the meeting and meeting with the kind of person and the indepth knowledge you want to acquire about that particular country.
Courses in etiquette
Rush Lifestyle offers two courses with clients anywhere between the ages of 14 to 85, customized as per requirements. Brides and students are the main target audiences. When students go overseas to study and enter a foreign country, it helps them be aware of the culture, attire and social etiquettes involved and are not less confident about projecting themselves. The goal is to see the student nurtures the necessary building blocks through poise, confidence, integrity and leadership. Brides and grooms, on the other hand, are put at ease and are prepared for the D-day taking care of styling, mannerisms, etiquette, body language and make-up.
Delhi has more corporate clients, more professionals striving to be more poised and successful in the corporate world. People know the importance of dressing well and good etiquette in making a better place for themselves in society and work environment. It is still catching up in Kolkata where people are beginning to understand the need of being updated, to dress for success. But nevertheless there is still a huge market for the common man, students and bridegrooms, bringing in the finesse.
Soft skills training are given more importance now apart from professional achievements, propelling you to higher levels of success with a blend of both. From a firm handshake and making eye contact to dining etiquettes, awareness of what to do right can only make your journey seamless.