Recently I was asked to present a seminar on business etiquette to a group of young employees. Their leaders felt that the young crowd didn’t understand proper business rules. That same week I attended a celebration Gala with business leaders. I quickly understood why so many young people appear to lack business etiquette. They don’t have decent role models. While several high profile speakers were making their brief remarks from the platform, several tables of middle aged or older members of the audience continued to talk and laugh loudly.
The young people in the crowd were respectfully listening. It made me ponder as to who really has the etiquette problem. The older members of the crowd either had too much to drink at the champagne reception, and would be slobs anywhere, or their arrogance and inflated egos wouldn’t allow them to stop talking, laughing, and being outrageously loud.
In leadership it’s said that the good leaders walk the talk. During my career I’ve found that to be true. In my corporate training world I find that the strongest corporations have leaders who practice what they preach. I’ve had the opportunity to witness many corporate leaders and their spouses at social events and the true leaders always display business etiquette. How about you? Do you find that we are really just a bunch of slobs?