Meeting Manners Matter

"The problem with meeting manners is people don't realize that they matter."
-- Anonymous

"We should restore the practice of dueling. It might improve manners around here."
-- Edward Abbey

The benefits of good manners are obvious. They make your professional relationships more productive and increase the likelihood of effective problem solving in teams. A recent US World and News Report poll indicated that rudeness had increased so dramatically that society was experiencing a profound social breakdown. 89% of the individuals polled said that it was a serious problem in today's society. Only 10% confessed to ever being rude! Common sense tells us that at least a few more people out there are being rude, but as I like to say, There's nothing common about sense. There are just some times when we don't realize that our manners are not as good as they could be.

List of Manners Often Forgotten:
  • Say Hello/Introduce Yourself. Greet each participant. Introduce yourself to people you don't know. Make eye contact and smile.
  • Arrive On Time. Be considerate of other peoples' time.
  • Grooming/Posture. Dress for the meeting, not for yourself. Your clothing and posture create an impression. Try to create a positive one! (Don't put your feet up, lean on the table, or snap your chewing gum.)
  • Pagers/Beepers/Cell Phones. Turn off cell phones and put pagers on vibrate.
  • Pay Attention. Don't read email, memos, or other items when someone else is speaking. Don't carry on side conversations. Twisting paperclips and doodling gives the impression that you really don't care.
  • Avoid Foul Language and Sarcasm. Remember why you're there.
  • Be Prepared. Don't make yourself look like the kid who got caught not doing his or her homework.
  • Don't Interrupt. It's an annoying speaking habit and you don't want to miss out on everyone else's good ideas, do you?
  • Don't Leave Early. If it can't be avoided, tell the others at the beginning that you will be leaving at a specific time and apologize in advance for any inconvenience this may cause.
  • Clean Up After Yourself. Throw away your discarded papers and any soda cans and trash you may have generated. Do not assume that someone else will clean up your mess.

Adopting good manners can help any meeting run smoothly and allow you to make a good impression on others. At an Association Meeting, you're working as a team for the betterment of your own neighborhood.

Remember actions speak louder than words and irritating your neighbors is NEVER a good idea!

Source: Association Times
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