Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Sexual Harassment and Etiquette

With the new code of office etiquette, the stenographers also demand a minimum wage of $10.00 a week and the eliminating of swearing on the part of employers.

Stenographers Put Ban on Kiss
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Oath from Bosses

BOSTON, May 16.—Kissing is to be taboo in business offices and the gentle caress must be foresworn by employers in the future if the “clean up” campaign launched by the Union of Stenographers, Bookkeepers, Accountants and Office Employes of Greater Boston today has its desired results. 


With the new code of office etiquette, the stenographers also demand a minimum wage of $10.00 a week and the eliminating of swearing on the part of employers. They claim kissing is submitted to frequently, in order to hold positions and that many employers swear at their fair subordinates. – International News Service, 1916

Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia 

Etiquette Over Royal Pretender

“Some people have declared that the Jacobites used to drink from the finger bowls themselves to ‘Charlie across the water,’ but this is a needless aspersion on the followers of James II...” – The focus of the Jacobitism political movement in Great Britain and Ireland. Jacobites and Charles Edward Stuart (1720 – 1788) aka “Bonnie Prince Charlie” aimed to restore him and his heirs to the thrones of England, Scotland, France and Ireland.


Royal Etiquette for Finger Bowls

During a visit of Royalty in a country house everybody rises when the Royal personage enters a room, but there is another custom which is perhaps little known to the outside world. That is a curious rule regarding finger bowls. 


At dinner parties where any members of the Royal family happen to be present, none of the other guests is provided with a finger bowl. The reason given for this practice is that it is a custom dating from the time of the pretender, when the Jacobites used to drink from them to “Charlie across the water.” – Los Angeles Herald, 1902

Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia

Etiquette and Tyranny

By invitation only? “Shall persons be excluded from society or be allowed to enter it on their own terms? Society might be so conducted as to make of it a charming and delightful recreation instead of tyrannical business, and those who see this clearly can do much toward making it so.” – Invitation to election for the Executive Board and Officers of the Society for 1895-96, etc... Florence Earle Coates was elected President of the Browning Society of Philadelphia that year. (Photo Public Domain)



The Tyranny of Etiquette

It is impossible to read even the least dogmatic books on etiquette without being oppressed with the conviction that a heavy and binding addition has been made to the code of morals in the bylaws which have to do with visiting cards, invitations, conventional phrases and other minor, but vigorous formulas. It has been reiterated by writers on those subjects that not a single rule of etiquette is arbitrary, but that all prove their reason in the very nature of things, and that those who disregard them simply show their own lack of insight and incapacity to appreciate genuine refinement. 


While this is all very well for society people pure and simple or those who have other definite and absorbing work in life compliance with all the thousand and one trifling points of etiquette is an utter impossibility. The question then becomes, shall such persons be excluded from society or be allowed to enter it on their own terms? Society might be so conducted as to make of it a charming and delightful recreation instead of tyrannical business, and those who see this clearly can do much toward making it so.—Philadelphia Press, 1895


Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia 

Timeless Business Etiquette

Keep private life to yourself. Avoid office politics and religious discussions. Keep business life and recreation separate. Don't be interested in other people's work at the office.” – Miss Wava McCullough

Commercial Club sponsors “Etiquette”

Sponsored by the Commerce Club, various articles are to appear in the Corsair from time to time on “Etiquette.” The first article, below, by Miss Wava McCullough, commercial art instructor, is on “Business Etiquette.” Later articles will be on etiquette at games (sportsmanship), etiquette at dances, and etiquette on the campus. 

Business Etiquette  

Making Contacts 

Determine the type of job you want. Talk to your friends. What do they do? Discuss it with your instructors. Do research reading. What kind of a firm do you want to work in? Don't rely on your friends to get you a job. Use business associates for contacts. Use agencies. If you must make a “cold” contact, plan your approach. 

Attitude Is Important 

Don't be a clock-watcher. Try to do more than is asked of you. Make an effort to familiarize yourself with terms needed in office use. Admit mistakes. Think of your job as a stepping-stone to a better job. A job is what you make it. Sit and stagnate or develop it and in so doing advance yourself. You do yourself a favor by making yourself a better-than-average employee. Impress the boss with the quality of your work rather than your personality. Be ambitious but don't push yourself on others.

You and the Business World 

Appearance gives color to an office. Cleanliness and neatness are more important than expensive clothes. Extreme lines and bright colors are distracting in an office. Wear simple, well-pressed clothes —no bobby socks or excessive jewelry. Give special attention to hair and hands. 

Habits 

Be on time. Gum chewing and nibbling are not allowed. Don't slouch. Avoid mannerisms — hair twisting, and leg winding. Use the office phone in emergency only. Smile, be pleasant. Don't complain. Listen, do not talk too much. 

Policy 

Keep private life to yourself. Avoid office politics and religious discussions. Keep business life and recreation separate. Don't be interested in other people's work at the office. – The Corsair, 1945

Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia 

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Coffee Klatch Etiquette



The etiquette of the Coffee Klatch consists mainly of being glad you have friends to share your coffee cakes with. On a large tray, place coffee pot, cups, creamer and sugar bowl, enough small plates and small napkins.

Invite Your Friends to a Coffee Party 

By Mrs. Penrose Lyly

Coffee Klatches must have been invented by genial angels. A pot of sparkling coffee, a bowl of glistening sugar, thick cream and a ring of coffee cake fresh from the oven and a few friends, of course, when the winter day darkens to a cold, brisk night, no man or woman has a right to expect more from the kindly gods. 

The etiquette of the Coffee Klatch consists mainly of being glad you have friends to share your coffee cakes with. On a large tray, place coffee pot, cups, creamer and sugar bowl, enough small plates and small napkins. Light your living room fire and put the tray on a small table near it. Draw as many comfortable chairs as you have guests around the coffee table and then snuggle down for a grand afternoon. 

The Coffee Klatch, when held along the lines described above, is a lot like the traditional afternoon tea, of course except that you don't serve any tea. For that very reason, perhaps, you'll find it a welcome change in your entertainment routine. And you might find, too, that it creates a slightly different atmosphere than the afternoon tea creates; less conducive to gossip, more productive of  “homey” comfort. – Every Week Magazine, 1933

Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia 

Monday, April 16, 2018

Miss Manners on Parenting

“The easy-going parent may well be remembered as uncaring, and the demonstrative one as suffocating. There is hardly a parental instinct that cannot be perverted into a grievance by the efforts of a thoughtful child, especially if aided by an enthusiastic therapist. It is a mistake, therefore, to guide one’s parental behavior with the risky business of reputation in mind.” 

Reminiscences of Childhood

“Be kind to your biographer,” Miss Manners’ dear father used to say when carefully dating his letters, diaries and memorabilia. It is an idea that takes on a whole new meaning when you consider that your most likely biographer is your own child. That few parents will end up as the leading characters in films or books written by their children is probably just as well. But there is a natural and not unreasonable human hope that one will be remembered as a supporting character when that child comes to bore his descendants with his reminiscences. What the overall judgment will be on the parents performance is a gamble. 
The easy-going parent may well be remembered as uncaring, and the demonstrative one as suffocating. There is hardly a parental instinct that cannot be perverted into a grievance by the efforts of a thoughtful child, especially if aided by an enthusiastic therapist. It is a mistake, therefore, to guide one’s parental behavior with the risky business of reputation in mind. 

The rule is to do the best you can, in what you believe to be the child's ultimate interests, and be prepared to suffer through the child’s later explanation of how he (by that time a childless young adult who knows everything) would have done it better. Nature has its own revenge, in that these people usually eventually have children of their own. But there are certain factors that can enhance childhood in a memorable way. (Miss Manners feels that this is a more acceptable way of putting it than suggesting that the parent work on the image.) The most effective of all, according to Miss Manners’ dear mother (and you can see what a success Miss Manners’ parents were at figuring favorably in their child’s memory), is the simplest. A teacher, she often heard the parental lamentation of “But we give him everything” from those whose children confided to their teacher, separately, how much they cheerfully hated their parents. The parental complaint was followed by a list itemizing valuable goods given. “I could never find a correlation between the parents’ generosity and the child’s feeling about them,” noted Miss Manners' mother. “Then I began to notice a connection between the child's feelings and the parents’ facial expressions when they came to pick him up at school, or even when they just talked about him. The parent who beamed at the child had a loving child, and the one who didn't, didn't. After that, it didn't seem to matter what else the parents did or didn't do.” 

Miss Manners is happy to present such unmaterialistic news, although she does not deny that many people’s fondest childhood memories have to do with toys or other presents. But then again, it is the way the thing is presented. The parent who gives whatever is asked, when it is asked, seems to get no return except increased expectation. The generally sensible parent, who restricts giving to fixed occasions and the choice of presents to items that are educational, useful or apt to be of lasting, rather than fleeting, enjoyment, will give enormous pleasure by a rare wild deviation from this policy. A gentleman of Miss Manners’ acquaintance once, while out to lunch with his teenaged daughter, impulsively stopped in a jewelry store and bought her diamond stud earrings. Miss Manners’ own father achieved the same effect, at somewhat less cost, when she was 11 and on an educational sightseeing trip by suddenly, without apparent cause or warning, buying flowers and pinning them on her coat. It is of such that memories are made and, incidentally, standards for future entrance into the family. A young lady who has experienced spontaneous romanticism is unlikely to fall in love with someone of grudging manners. – Miss Manners, 1984

Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia

Wedding Guest Etiquette Quiz



Take this quiz from Bride's Magazine and see if you're up to the wedding season ahead! 

Do you know how to be the perfect guest?

If the first sign of spring is the crocus, the second is just as surely the wedding invitation. Now is the time of year when any day is likely to bring an elegant envelope tucked in with your electric bill, supermarket circular and favorite magazine subscription. So it's a good time to ask: How's your guest etiquette? 

True or False: 
  1. Verbal acceptance of a wedding invitation is okay. 
  2. You don't have to send a gift if you don't go to the wedding. 
  3. You should bring the wedding present to the reception. 
  4. If you're dating someone, it's all right to bring him or her to the wedding. 
  5. A female guest shouldn't wear all-black or all-white. 
  6. The last person to be seated in church is the mother of the bride. 
  7. On the receiving line, you “congratulate” the groom, offer “best wishes” to the bride. 
  8. You shouldn't leave the reception before the newlyweds do. 

Answers: 
  1. F– Unless it's a very informal invitation. A formal, engraved invitation should be answered with a brief, handwritten note on a double sheet of fine white note paper. If a response card is provided, use that. 
  2. T–  If you're close to the couple, you'll probably want to send a gift, but it's not required. 
  3. F – Except if the gift is a check. Then you can bring it to the wedding and give it to the couple personally. (Make it out to Mr. and Mrs.) Otherwise, send the gift to the bride at her home as soon as possible after you receive the invitation. A check sent before the wedding is made out to the bride.
  4. F – An invitation is only for those specifically mentioned. Unless it reads “and guest” or “and family,” they only want you. 
  5. T – Although the rules are bending somewhat on this, especially since black is so fashionable now. In general, judge what you should wear by the formality of the invitation. You can rarely go wrong m a suit and tie, for a man, and a street-length dressy party or cocktail dress, for a woman. 
  6. T – This is the signal that the ceremony is about to begin, so if you arrive later, stand unobtrusively at the back unless the ushers direct otherwise. It's best to try to arrive at least 10-15 minutes early. 
  7. T – You could cause offense if you reverse them. Other tips for negotiating the receiving line: Introduce yourself to anyone who isn't certain to know you. (Remember, the whole wedding party is in a bit of a daze by now.) Say something brief and pleasant to parents and other family members. 
  8. T – Although this was truer in the days when the bride and groom always left the reception early, in a shower of rice, to go directly on their honeymoon. These days, some newlyweds stay right until the end of the party, so an alternate rule might be: Don't leave until the cake has been cut and served. Remember to thank the wedding's hostess (usually the bride's mother) when you do go. – Bride’s Magazine, 1984

Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J. Graber, is the Site Editor for the Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia