Business etiquette can be a little daunting for those new to networking or business events. So, in light of National Awkward Moments Day, we thought best to put together a few pointers to help you avoid any business blunders at your next conference or corporate event.
Ignoring The Invitation
There isn't much more frustrating to an event organiser than a delegate that fails to respond to the invitation. Not only does this affect the event budget process, but also leaves event planners wondering whether you are to be catered for or not.
We know, you're busy. So often an invitation can get lost in a myriad of emails, or swept under a pile of paperwork on your desk.
If you receive an invitation, don't wait so long that the event organisers have to chase you for a response. Respond within five days of receiving your invitation or by the requested RVSP date.
Dress Code Disasters
This is where that invitation comes in handy again... hold onto it! Turning up at a formal business event dressed in your office casuals will not only make you stand out, but will reflect on your own business and professional standards.
Make a note of the dress code stated on the invitation. If there isn't a dress code, opt for business dress to avoid any uncomfortable under-dressing scenarios.
The bottom line... don't be late. If the event begins at 9am however the invitation states that breakfast will be served from 8.30am, arrive by 8.30am. You don't want to be the last person to take your seat at 8.55am, grappling with your morning coffee in view of a room full of delegates.
It happens at many networking events. You're deep in conversation with another person, when someone else they know comes over to say hello. You stand, awkwardly, waiting to be introduced, yet instead, simply watch them begin a new conversation whilst you wait patiently, shuffling your feet.
If someone you know comes to join you in conversation, or takes a seat beside you, extend an introduction to the other people around you. Not only does this make for a more effective networking opportunity, it will also ensure you're remembered as someone that can make connections.
Killing The Conversation
If in doubt, stick to business. Unloading all of your personal stories and opinions on those you don't know might come across as overly forward, and could rub a few people up the wrong way!
A few topics to steer clear of... personal health, personal finance, divisive topics, and anything that constitutes as gossip. Save that for your social circle.
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