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Gender and Business

photo: two cups of coffee on a table with a man's and woman's hands near each

Business Etiquette is Gender Neutral

Today, work environments are filled with both men and women working side by side. With the significant rise of women in the workplace, comes a new set of social concerns. While it's always a good idea to check first, here's a list of general guidelines for handling everyday social situations when in a business setting.

  • Holding a door. Whoever arrives at the door first holds it for others.
  • Exiting an elevator. The person closest to the door exits first.
  • Paying for a meal. Whoever does the inviting pays for the meal.
  • Standing. Male or female, it is always polite to stand to greet someone. This is especially important when the person is of higher rank, a client, or of an older generation.
  • Shaking hands. Today, a man does not need to wait for a woman to offer her hand before he extends his. Whether you are a man or a woman, always remember to shake hands!
  • Helping to carry something. Everyone appreciates some help when they are overloaded with books or packages. Regardless of your gender, lend your co-workers a helping hand when they are in need.
  • When in doubt, ask. If you are unsure how your gesture will be received, ask: "May I get the door for you?", "Would you like help with your packages?"