Etiquette is a combination of respect for individuals, courtesy and good manners. The Following is a list of etiquette guidelines:
If you make an appointment or indicate that you will attend an event, plan to do so. If you can’t attend, cancel with as much notice as possible (no less that 24 hours, more notice is ALWAYS preferable).
Don’t be late. Anticipate additional time for traffic, parking, locating the office, etc. If you are running late, call. Carry the necessary numbers for all appointments.
Do not interrupt the speaker. Take turns speaking or asking questions and be brief and succinct.
Respond to requests, invitations, email and telephone messages in a timely manner (usually within 24 hours). If you need more time to respond fully or fulfil a request, contact the sender and indicate that you received the message and will respond as soon as you can.
Leave professional voicemail messages. The message on your phone should be polite and to the point. There should be no background noise. Tell the callers who you are and to please leave a message and you will get back with them. When you leave messages for others, make sure that you clearly state who you are, why you a calling and how to contact you. Spell your name and state your phone number, with area code, clearly. Keep your
message brief. (some people choose to repeat their names and numbers clearly.)
Turn off your cell phone during all classes, meetings and events. If you are expecting an important call, put your phone on vibrate and leave the room quietly. In small meetings (usually 10 or fewer people), it is polite to inform the other participants in advance that you are expecting an urgent call and may need to leave for a few minutes. In a larger setting, try to sit close to an exit and quietly leave the room.
No text messaging. Text messaging or attending to other matters while in class or during presentations is discourteous. Your attention needs to be on the professor and not distracting the students around you.
Express your gratitude. Any time that people assist you in some way, it is polite to show appreciation for their efforts. You can do this by saying “thank you”, sending an email or writing a note. In exceptional situations, contacting the person’s supervisor to convey the help that you received is usually appreciated.
When interacting with a person with a disability, remember that s/he is first a person. Be polite and age-‐appropriate in your interactions. Offer to shake hands if called for in the situation. Always ask a person if s/he wants help before assisting the individual.
When communicating with people other than friends, it is expected that you use a formal writing style.
Do not write in all capital letter. Writing in all capitals makes it seem as if you’re shouting, and some readers find it more difficult to read. If you want to stress a point, underline or put it in bold font. Capitalize when traditionally required (such as “I” and not lowercase “i”).
Avoid abbreviations and emoticons. Using abbreviations (“ur” for “you are”) or emoticons (e.g ….) are inappropriate in formal email messages.
Always fill the subject line. Your email’s subject line is the first impression your recipient has of your professionalism. Make it a clear expression of the purpose or content of your message.
Use a professional format. Always send a professional, well-‐constructed email to inform, request or reply. Do not start email messages with “Hey” or other informal greetings.
Make your email clear and concise. When you are emailing professionals, be clear in your purpose. Do not make the recipient guess your request or meaning. Write in a clear and concise format, using short paragraphs so your reader can find information quickly. Put your most important information in the first or second paragraph. Your emails should be as short and succinct as possible (not longer than one-‐half page). To convey additional content,
schedule a meeting or phone call.
Avoid sarcasm. It’s difficult to judge tone in an email. Don’t use ironic or sarcastic language that may not come across as you intended.
Do not use “cute” email addresses for important emails. An email sent from firstname.lastname@example.org will come across as unprofessional. Even if you have to create a new email account, use a more business-‐like address, such a email@example.com to be taken more seriously.
Know when to telephone or schedule a meeting. Email is convenient, but it should not replace phone calls or face-‐to-‐face meetings. For complicated or sensitive matters, pick up the telephone or talk in person.
Double check before hitting “send.” It only takes a few minutes to take another look at your email before you hit send, it could improve the impression of your email address. Use your computer’s spelling and grammar checks, but be aware that these don’t catch all mistakes. For an important email, you may want to have someone else proofread it before you send it.
Sign off with your name. Don’t make the reader guess who sent the email based on your email address.
Use what you learned in English class. All email should be written with good grammar and sentence structure and correct spelling.
If you need assistance with this, please contact Writing Services at Career Coaching firstname.lastname@example.org or call 73953490.
REMEMBER: How you write an email message can leave a lasting impression – good or bad!