Monday, 7 March 2011

Courting clients - business etiquette, courtesy, handshakes and business cards.

A Mug's Game ?

Sales of commemorative mugs are doing a brisk trade at the moment at the souvenir and gift shops.

Even in this day and age those invited to the wedding will be 'mugging up' on the equivalent of courtly behaviours.

It got me thinking how many words we use in selling have the root of court word.

We court clients.
We observe courtesies.
Some sales people still make courtesy calls.

Extending Courtesy is a behaviour that is expected by buyers even if it is not universally reciprocated.

For those attending the royal wedding there are other questions perhaps.

What is appropriate dress? What are the behaviours expected in such circumstances? How should one address X or Y?

For those in the public eye , 'a faux part' could be most damaging to their image even their career. They might well feel the need to seek advice from a source such as Debrett. or even Wikipedia which explains how one should address the prince to millions who will probably never need to.

( Interestingly Debrett's declare they are the modern authority on all matters of etiquette, social occasions, people of distinction and fine style'. Their website’s congratulations to the couple refers to Kate Middleton rather than Catherine. - puts me in my place! )

Similarly if Salespeople believe that "the customer is (their) King or Queen , Prince or Princess)" questions of behaviour or ‘what is the right way to…?’, are part of a salesperson’s everyday life. Some companies even issue booklets on the topic.

What are correct ways to behave in today's commercial interactions ?

Business etiquette and netiquettte have social conventions which have become increasingly important.

These rules are often echoed throughout industry or economy.

The Debrett website has a section on mobile etiquette that maybe both sellers and buyers might find interesting!

The handshake is initiated when the two hands touch, immediately.

Handshaking is commonly done upon meeting, greeting, parting, offering congratulations, expressing gratitude, or completing an agreement.

Pressing the Flesh - " let's shake on it".

( Basalt Stela from Comagne. It depicts one of the first records of handshaking. King Antiochus I c 69-30 BCE greeting the God Verethragna-Heraklas Arcs. The stela was found in a village in the 1900s where it was being used as an Oil press which explains the hole through the middle - 1t BC Samsat, Turkey. - Photo taken in the British Museum)

In sporting contests or other competitive activities, a handshake is a sign of good sportsmanship.

Its purpose is to convey trust, balance, and equality. So it is in the business meeting

Unless health issues or local culture dictate otherwise a handshake should always be made using bare hands.

Shaking hands is considered the standard greeting in business situations.

It is considered poor taste to show dominance with too strong a handshake; conversely, too weak a handshake (sometimes referred to as a "limp fish" or "dead fish" handshake) could also considered unseemly due to people perceiving it as a sign of weakness .

Business cards are cards bearing business information about a company or individual.

They are shared during formal introductions as a convenience and a memory aid.

A business card typically includes the giver's name, company affiliation (usually with a logo) and contact information such as street addresses, telephone number(s), fax number, e-mail addresses and website.

Traditionally many cards were simple black text on white stock; today a professional business card will sometimes include one or more aspects of striking visual design.

Click for free summary of the TACK Buyers' Views Research .

1 comment:

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