Top Ten Etiquette Faux Pas!

Shocked!I recently attended a networking event where people shared their pet peeves about rude and inappropriate behavior. It led me to create this list of my all-time pet peeves. Other than the first two items, the rest are in no particular order of importance.

1. Being late. I absolutely cannot stand people who are habitually late. I’m told this is a disease of sorts, yet I can’t help but be offended when it happens to me. It shows the person’s selfishness and lack of respect and care for others.

Remedy: Care more about being on time and the greater good of the others than allowing yourself to be late.

2. Texting, checking emails or voicemails while in a meeting or seminar, at a party, in a restaurant, at the movies and whenever in the company of others. This is the epitome of rudeness to others around you. It is a sign your electronic device is more important than the person in front of you and you are allowing yourself to be unfocused and distracted by what’s taking place at that moment.

Remedy: Always leave your blankety-blank phone alone by having it off or on vibrate while in the company of others.

3. Speaking loudly in public. Especially when on a cell phone, this includes being loud on public transportation, on the street, in a restaurant, and at the movies. Most likely these people don’t even know they are disturbing others with their behavior.

Remedy: Since people don’t know that they are causing a problem, pay attention to others and their body language when you are talking in public. Are people looking at you or plainly overhearing your conversation? If so, lower your voice.  Another remedy for cell phone users is to move your cell phone away from your ear a fraction of an inch while talking.  This will allow your voice to resonate through your head more normally and you’ll quickly hear how loud your voice may be.

4. Replying to “All” in an email. Don’t send a batch message to a group of people who do not all know each other. Also do not send a reply to all when only one person may need to know you are or are not attending a meeting.

Remedy: Use the BCC line when sending batch messages or only reply to the person who needs to see your response. When forwarding messages with a trail of previous addresses showing, delete all previous addresses, leaving only the content that’s forwarded.

5. Being a no-show. I get steamed when a person doesn’t have the courtesy to call or email when they are unable to attend a party to which they replied they would be attending. It shows a lack of care on the part of the guest.

Remedy: Let the host know when you are unable to attend, even at the last minute, by email, telephone, or text when appropriate. When circumstances prevent you from writing ahead of time, send an apology message afterwards.

6. Showing up unannounced. For special events such as a wedding, it is most inappropriate to show up without letting the host or organizer know ahead of time.

Remedy: Even at the last minute, call the host/organizer to confirm it will be appropriate for you to attend.

7. Bringing extra guests to an event. It is never appropriate to bring extra uninvited guests to any gathering without first asking permission of the host/organizer… period!

Remedy: Call the host to confirm. How hard is that?

8. Dividing a restaurant check by what each person ordered. This is crazy. Especially when dining in a group greater than 3 people, it’s easier to simply divide the check evenly.

Remedy: Gain agreement among all people at the table the plan will be to divide the check evenly. To be sensitive to non-drinkers at the table perhaps ask for a separate check for alcohol and wine.  As you know this can be greater than the cost of the entire dinner.

9. Waiting to cross the street by stepping off the curb. What’s wrong with staying on the sidewalk? Standing in the street often prevents a driver from turning the corner as well as possible.

10. People who walk against a “Do Not Walk” or red light. Why not simply wait until the light changes to green? Tests have shown you gain very little time in the greater scheme of things by risking your life and putting others at risk of hitting you.

Remedy: Learn to be more patient and if it’s because you are running late, allow more time to travel in the future.

There are an infinite number of items to include in such a list. I’d love to hear your pet peeves in a comment below. Please also suggest a remedy so it won’t just be a complaint. We’d all like to learn how to be better citizens of the world.

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2 Responses to "Top Ten Etiquette Faux Pas!"

  • Carol Bullock says:
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