PRoper etiquette

      10 Comments on PRoper etiquette
Guest blogger Katie Spoleti

Guest blogger Katie Spoleti

From time to time, Public Relations Nation posts a guest blog written by a Hofstra student. Katie Spoleti is a journalism major and a senior in the Lawrence Herbert School of Communication at Hofstra University. 

Home for the holidays means getting to spend quality time with family members and friends you haven’t seen in a while. With Christmas break just around the corner, dinner parties, small get-togethers and nights out are inevitably in everyone’s near future. So, now it’s time to avoid those “red-flag” moments when it comes to respectfully interacting with company.

In an era driven around technology, it’s easy to prioritize social media over a social life. One of the first rules to having proper etiquette in any situation is recognizing when it’s appropriate to use your cell phone. Etiquette expert Diane Gottsman says, “We tend to get overly comfortable because of the ease of using our devices.” Since many of us are attached to our phones at all hours, it’s hard to put them away even when we’re sharing time with others. Gottsman recommends putting your smart phone away at the dinner table (especially if you’re out to eat), when listening to someone else speak and especially during any type of interview.

Once the phone is turned off and put away, becoming an engaged member of the conversation is the next step to displaying good manners. If you haven’t seen someone in a while or are meeting them for the first time, it’s important to be an attentive listener. Let the person know that you’re interested by picking up on something they said and asking them a follow up question about it.

Since you may be making a lot of plans over the break, it’s important to RSVP when necessary. Arriving on time to any event is always an etiquette must just as much as leaving at an appropriate hour is. You want to be respectful but also not overstay your welcome. Lastly, if something comes up and you have to reschedule, make sure you tell the other party ahead of time instead of just not showing up.

Even though these tips are reminders for the holidays, they should be followed every day of the year. Is there ever a good enough excuse to not follow these etiquette laws? Your thoughts?

10 thoughts on “PRoper etiquette

  1. A. Murphy

    I still find it incredible that people need to be instructed how to behave around others. Nonetheless, people do. People of all ages need to be reminded to be present and in-the-moment instead of having their eyeballs glued to their screens (of any kind).

    There are always exceptions to everything, but I don’t think the exceptions should dictate the rule-of-thumb; people should spend more time being present in the moment.

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  2. ARI OKONOFUA

    Home etiquette is so important and can at times be hard to do. There were so many times at Thanksgiving that I had to put down my phone and realized that out of habit I always have it in my hand. I turned my phone off during dinner and took photos of my food but wanted to be 100% focused on my family – this helped but I need to learn how to give myself a phone break at times.

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  3. ari okonofua

    Home etiquette is so important and can at times be hard to do. There were so many times at Thanksgiving that I had to put down my phone and realized that out of habit I always have it in my hand. I turned my phone off during dinner and took photos of my food but wanted to be 100% focused on my family – this helped but I need to learn how to give myself a phone break at times.

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  4. Vanessa

    I’m glad this topic was touched upon, I can never stress how important etiquette is. I think we live in a society where we’re so busy and on the go that we forget the simple things. The idea of staying connected at times makes us lose connecting with individuals that are right in front of us. I do believe that putting the phone away at dinner, being punctual to an event, and informing the host of any changes to plans are important. I think these are basic etiquette fundamentals and should be followed.

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  5. caprice oliver

    I too believe that etiquette is very important to know and use on a daily basis. My mom took the time to make sure that I followed through with taking etiquette classes as a pre-teen. I believe that all youth should be exposed to no matter what background you come from. Excellent post!

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  6. Daniela Gagliano

    It’s crazy to think we need to be reminded about proper etiquette, but with technology these days and changing times, it might be necessary. Holidays are about bringing the people we love together, which requires manors and respect, and most importantly- socialization NOT social media. A cute Christmas insta isn’t a bad thing as long as it’s not the main focus of the event. Having an engaging conversation is more important and stimulating to our brains then a few thousand scrolls through social media, especially when everyone’s coming from all over to get together.

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  7. Michael Esposito

    This post is so important and has so many different, useful tips. Especially during the holiday season when seeing old friends and extended family, it’s easy to not appreciate it and live inside your phone. I’m glad that this was posted because now when seeing old friends and family I’ll keep in mind the use of my phone.

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  8. Justin McCue

    I completely agree with Katie, and it is something that should not only be followed on holidays, but everyday. People are getting way too attached to their phones and technology, to the point that they aren’t communicating well around people right in front of them. Call me old-fashioned, but when I am talking to somebody, I try to give them one hundred percent of my undivided attention where possible. Nothing irks me more than when I am trying to hold a conversation with someone who is checking their Facebook or responding to a text. If it is something that is urgently important, have the respect to excuse yourself to check what you need to on your phone.

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  9. SShak

    I am really glad that Katie brought up these points; it is actually something I have caught myself doing far too frequently recently and have promised to try to cut down. We must always be sure to be in the present moment, no matter with who. As easy as it is to be sidetracked by all that is going on in the world of our smartphones, we must remain focused on those around us.

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  10. Aisha B

    I agree with the advice given in this post. This is something that should be followed at any time ,holiday or no holiday. Social media has gotten the best of some of us that we don’t know how to communitcate with others. I must say that social media is sometimes the reason for someone’s tardiness at a dinner party or event. Letting people know how we look before an event through selfies can definitely take up time. This post was definetly needed and hope that people take heed to it.

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