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Top 7 Ways To Graciously Meet And Greet People In Your Office
By Lydia Ramsey
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Your initial contact with a client, colleague or vendor is critical to your success in business. Getting off on the wrong foot can make for a difficult relationship or no relationship at all. Your goal within the first few minutes of meeting other people is to make them feel comfortable and to put them at ease so they will want to do business or work with you. When you learn and use the rules of business etiquette for those critical encounters, you will have a solid start for long-term profitable relationships. Use these seven simple strategies to get started.
- Stand up whenever you meet or greet someone. This allows you to engage the person eye to eye and sends a message that you value this person. If you are in a position where you can't stand up (such as being trapped behind a potted plant at the restaurant) offer an apology and an explanation. Say something like, "Please excuse me for not getting up. I can't seem to get around the foliage."
- Smile. Look as if you are pleased to meet the other person even if you are having a bad day. Your facial expression and body language convey more than your words.
- Make eye contact. Looking at the people you meet says you are focused and interested in them. If you are staring off somewhere else or glancing around the room, you give the appearance of looking for someone more interesting or important to come along.
- Introduce yourself immediately. As soon as you approach people you don't know or a stranger approaches you offer your name and say something about yourself. Don't stand around as if someone else is in charge of introductions.
- Offer a firm handshake. Extend your hand as you give your greeting and introduction. The person who puts a hand out first comes across as confident and at ease. Make sure that this physical part of your greeting is professional. Avoid those bone-crushing grips or wimpy limp-wristed shakes.
- Learn how to make introductions smoothly and professionally. Always introduce lower ranking people to higher-ranking people. To do this say the name of the more important person first, followed by the words "I'd like to introduce..." and then give the other person's name. Be sure to add something about each person so they will know why they are being introduced and will have some information with which to start a conversation.
- Pay attention to names when you meet people and use first names only when given permission. It is all too common to be thinking about what clever thing you are going to say next and forget to focus on the other personís name. If you concentrate and repeat the name as soon as you hear it, you stand a better chance of remembering it later. How impressive is that?
® 2008, Lydia Ramsey. All rights reserved. Reprints welcomed so long as article and by-line are kept intact and all links made live.
Lydia Ramsey is a business etiquette expert, professional speaker, corporate trainer and author. Learn from Lydia by using her four LIVE business etiquette broadcasts on DVD or by reading the latest edition of her widely-acclaimed book, Manners That Sell. You can purchase these invaluable business etiquette resources at: [http://www.mannersthatsell.com/tms/index.html]
Article Submitted On: February 29, 2008