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  • Writer's pictureVicki Viall

Is Etiquette Still In Vogue?

I hear people on Facebook, and in the real world, constantly questioning what happened to common manners and etiquette. It's a good question; a valid question. I don't claim to have the answer, merely my own opinions. Still, let's take a look at the question today.

I love dictionaries asnd thesauruses. I believe both lead us to clearer understanding when trying to learn about something. Anything. Everything. So...

Going to, here is the definition for etiquette:


conventional requirements as to social behavior;

proprieties of conduct as established in any class or community or for any occasion. a prescribed or accepted code of usage in matters of ceremony, as at a court or in official or other formal observances. the code of ethical behavior regarding professional practice or action among the members of a profession in their dealings with each other:medical etiquette. (Note 1)

Also to be clear, let's check out the word vogue:


something in fashion, as at a particular time: Short hairdos were the vogue in the twenties. popular currency, acceptance, or favor; popularity: The book is having a great vogue. (Note 2)

Etiquette, does not only apply in our homes, our classrooms, or our workspaces. Let's say, for example that you are at a lunch meeting. Doesn't etiquette apply then, too? Of course.

If you have ever had the pleasure of working in collections, or a related field, you probably question what happened to good manners and etiquette several times an hour! It is that bad. In fact, during my time in collections, I have learned words and heard threats I never encountered in the Navy or during bank robberies.

I also encountered an individual who truly believes it is their purpose in life to treat people harshly just to see if they will survive it. Then, proudly proclaims to them if they can survive the verbal abuse they just endured, they can survive anything.

Wrong! On any level. And, also just what I stated above: verbal abuse. Which is never, ever acceptable!

Since, in my opinion, etiquette and manners should be the same across the board, let's look at some common etiquette guidelines.

According to Business Insider, one should always stand when meeting a new person.

"Standing helps establish your presence. You make it easy for others to ignore you if you don’t stand. If you are caught off guard and cannot rise, you should lean forward to indicate that you would stand, if you could." (Note 3)

According to, handshakes are of equal importance:

"The physical connection you make when shaking hands with someone can leave a powerful impression. A firm handshake, made with direct eye contact, sets the stage for a positive encounter, says Diane Gottsman, owner of The Protocol School of Texas, a company specializing in executive leadership and business etiquette training. Also, remember: Men and women are equals in the workplace, so use the same handshake regardless of the person’s gender." (Note 4) also address attire:

"You’ve heard it before, but it bears repeating that you need to dress professionally at the office. Even if your office has a relaxed dress code, make sure you don’t look like you rolled out of bed and threw on whatever was at the bottom of your laundry hamper. Neatness counts.

Telephone etiquette could fill a business-how-to book all by itself. One of the best resources we have found is They have a list of do's and don'ts, so check it out.

The huffpost touched on one of my personal pet peeves. This is true any time you are with someone else, and it doesn't matter if it is for business or just chatting with friends.

Silent Smartphone: It’s polite and responsible to turn off your cell phone before meetings, meals, and meaningful moments – like dates! If you can’t turn your device off, turn it to silent or vibrate. Your phone is not a replacement for an in-person meeting. (Note 5)

Another frequent question and/or conunbrum that can arise is, who should open a door? Don't waste time on this one in the future. The answer is simply this simple:

Etiquette is not that hard. If you aren't sure what to do, just use your common sense! However, to help make it more enjoyable, and perhaps more memorable, I did find an interactive site that includes some fun games to help learn etiquette. Check it out! (Note 6)

Having no desire to beat a dead horse, I wanted to keep this as simple and easy as possible. Truly, etiquette is not difficult! Check out some of the quizzes mentioned above and that will confirm that for you.

Now, let's march into a new work week, even though we are still under a mandatory stay-at-home edict, determined to self-check our personal and business etiquette.

Let us know how it turns out! And, please ALL stay safe and healthy!

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