Episode 35 - Graduation Gifts and the Treadmill Boss
In this episode of Awesome Etiquette
Welcome to Awesome Etiquette, where we explore modern etiquette through the lens of consideration, respect and honesty. On today’s show you’re invited to a dual grad party, but you only really know one of the graduates. What is the gift-giving protocol?
Speaker 1: maybe it's just that you don't know how to use social courtesy. That's old fashioned
Speaker 2: host and hostess. They know that courtesy means showing respect, thinking of the other person, Real friendliness. Welcome to episode 35 of awesome etiquette. This week we're talking grad gifts and conversation etiquette. We have a special email from a proud mama listener and in honor of it and our train the trainer program that just wrapped,
Speaker 2: we're gonna talk Children's etiquette in our post script, all that and more coming up on awesome etiquette,
Speaker 1: awesome etiquette comes to you from the studios of Vermont Public Radio and is proud to be part of the infinite guest network from american public media. I'm lizzie Post
Speaker 2: and I'm dan post Senning from the Emily Post Institute.
Speaker 1: Well man,
Speaker 1: I'm still recovering its last week dan and I were a part of our Children's business and wedding etiquette. Train the trainer programs which we host here twice a year and it is a, it is six days of training uh straight hosts,
Speaker 2: play host
Speaker 1: the post play host and it is,
Speaker 1: it's a lot of fun man. People come from all over the world to come and learn how to teach business and Children's etiquette
Speaker 1: and how to better understand wedding etiquette so that they can really facilitate great relationships with their wedding clients and it is, man, you meet the most fascinating people that come here, they're all really enthusiastic about Emily Post and etiquette. They want to, I mean just like you, our listeners,
Speaker 1: they actually want to hear about etiquette. It's
Speaker 2: almost a little mini convention convention of etiquette aficionado.
Speaker 1: It is, it's true believers, true
Speaker 2: believers. Indeed. And to get a group of people who are that committed to etiquette. And and even the tradition specifically of Emily post the term kindred spirit I think is often overused
Speaker 1: gets there was
Speaker 2: one of those places where you're you're you're likely to find a kindred spirit if this is your passion and
Speaker 1: and I think it's always so exciting because just like our listeners who keep writing in and saying, you know, oh it's so great that you guys are so accessible and realistic,
Speaker 1: I love it when the trainers come in and on day one of the training, they really learn that, you know, we talk about etiquette being about consideration, respect and honesty, we have a five step process for solving relationship problems or just problems we have, you know, three goals that are very simple, very tight. And all of a sudden this whole idea of,
Speaker 1: You know, a 600 page book of rules is out the window and they're focused on this amazing ability that they now have to teach people how to better solve their problems. And it's like it's like this giant light bulb over everybody's head and it just stays on bright and shiny after day one
Speaker 2: and I hear you say 600 page book of rules. And just even though we're giant before light bulb and I think about the manual, this d ring binder, that's 3.5 inches over 600 pages are leader guide.
Speaker 1: Our leaders are manual for the program is even saying
Speaker 2: the teachings or step by step and it's really a curriculum building tool and it could be so daunting, it could be so scary in the same way that Emily's big book could be so scary if it were only rules
Speaker 2: and really those guiding principles, that framework of consideration, respect and honesty does
Speaker 2: boy, it gives you a ship to navigate that sea on and um it's it's our guide here on this program and it's really, it is a treat to share that with people and listen to your father
Speaker 1: sent them
Speaker 2: forth. One of my favorite parts of the training I have to mention is the big dinner that we all have and
Speaker 2: um I know it's pooja's favorite part. She loves to come along to that. She's looking looks forward to it now and not just because
Speaker 1: they didn't after okay I don't get how this happened but I'm totally, I'm totally throwing our co workers under the bus in this moment
Speaker 1: dan and I are obsessed with this one dish at the kitchen table which is their muscles and so is peter and so is my sister anna and somehow who they will be named nameless but the powers that be that booked the dinner after hearing how much we loved the muscles and getting them on the menu last year
Speaker 1: decided not to put them on. I was like, are you kidding me? The entire family wants those muscles, what are you doing?
Speaker 1: It was kind of funny
Speaker 2: muscles aside,
Speaker 1: the fish was
Speaker 2: delicious. And as always, the toast was gracious and the same way I look forward to your father's toasts on holidays. I look forward to that toast on train, the trainer because it is,
Speaker 2: it makes it a bit of a family affair and
Speaker 1: it is a family affair. I mean, we start out from the beginning, we welcome them into the family and that's really what it is. It's, you know,
Speaker 1: it's a big deal to us that this is what our family represents. This is not like a small thing, it's not just like, oh yeah, that's what I was born into, whatever my great, great grandmother was famous,
Speaker 1: it's actually something that the whole family has built upon generation after generation and that I know our generation and I know my father's generation is very proud of where they've brought Emily post etiquette to and how they've been able to keep it going over the years and to have people
Speaker 1: that want to be a part of that. It's not just like fans jumping up and down who are just Emily post geeks,
Speaker 1: it's like they are really genuine hearted people who want to go out there who see how this makes a difference and they want it to be a part of their communities. So much so that they're willing to teach it and that's a huge deal. I mean they really are becoming part of the family that year.
Speaker 2: It's, it's funny, it is, it is a treat to, to share this particular tradition and it's one of the things I like so much about this podcast and that I appreciate so much about all of you, all of our listeners out there who join us every week because it really is a treat to share this
Speaker 1: and
Speaker 2: um,
Speaker 2: it's an honor and a privilege. So thank you to all the trainers that made their way to Vermont to spend some time with us
Speaker 1: and thanks to
Speaker 2: all of you for taking a little time out of your week to spend some time with us.
Speaker 1: Well, let's make that time valuable and let's answer some of our
Speaker 2: listeners questions is a great idea.
Speaker 2: Sure you're right, but there's so much to learn how to do. Sure, there's a lot to learn, but it's worth it. And learning is easy. One way is by watching others
Speaker 1: on every episode of awesome etiquette, we take your questions on how to behave. So let's get started.
Speaker 1: All right, this is definitely going to be a popular question this time of year. What is the etiquette? If you get an invitation to a duel graduation party? If one is family and you don't know the other and by others, she means the honorees are you obligated to give a gift to the one you don't know sincerely Kelsey
Speaker 2: graduation season, it's graduation
Speaker 1: season.
Speaker 2: And graduation parties tend to line up on similar days. They happen in one of two or three weekends each year.
Speaker 1: You
Speaker 2: can almost count on it. Um The big picture point of etiquette here is that a
Speaker 2: an invitation to a graduation party doesn't necessarily carry an obligation to bring a gift,
Speaker 1: correct?
Speaker 2: Um It's always a good idea to R. S. V. P. Quickly. It's a really nice gesture to send a card that's sort of a a minimum etiquette role that you could play. It's it's it's it's not absolutely required but it's a really nice thing to do. I
Speaker 1: think I would say a card at the minimum. I think it would be a little strange to walk into a party without at least something
Speaker 1: that isn't just only your verbal words. I mean it's not mandatory but
Speaker 2: I can get on board with that and I
Speaker 1: think something would be good.
Speaker 2: Um But but how to handle this particular situation where you know one of the honorees much better than you know the other. Um I would bring a gift for the one that you know and a card for the one that you don't
Speaker 1: I think that sounds great and I wouldn't worry about the kid that you don't know,
Speaker 1: feeling slighted or anything because I think it would be strange for that kid to get a gift from someone they don't know.
Speaker 1: It's, it's like, oh thank you, That's so nice. You know,
Speaker 2: you don't make a big deal of giving the gift in front of the other
Speaker 1: graduate. Right, right.
Speaker 2: Um, show a little bit of discretion and choose your moment wisely.
Speaker 1: Yeah, these kids are probably expecting to see gifts come in for one or the other, that
Speaker 2: sort of thing. It certainly wouldn't be rude to bring a little something for both of them if you felt inspired to do that also.
Speaker 1: And that also brings up a good point just because you don't have to bring a gift, doesn't mean you can't bring a gift if you would really like to give a gift to the graduate by all means go for it
Speaker 1: also know that when you get an announcement for a graduation, it also does not
Speaker 1: um imply any gift or, or card even, it's just letting you know, it's just that thing where a
Speaker 2: way to share the good news, family
Speaker 1: is letting letting family and friends know that this person did graduate and that it was a really happy time with their family.
Speaker 2: Sometimes we get the question is is it okay to send announcements to people? And and we say yes, it absolutely is because it it doesn't necessarily carry that that obligation to reply with a gift. So feel free to, to share the good news
Speaker 1: each
Speaker 2: week, lizzie Post puts together a script for our show and she has titled this next question, You're fine, How am I? This question begins first. I listen to your podcast regularly and thank you for all the good advice. I wish more people I know would tune into your show. So my question,
Speaker 2: I am a pretty friendly guy at work. I smile and ask how anyone is doing. There are two women in particular I see and work with them very closely on a daily basis. I greet them with a good morning every day and periodically I'll ask how they're doing, spark small talk or give them a compliment.
Speaker 2: My compliments are usually pretty generic but always sincere. You look very nice today or that's a nice article of clothing you're wearing. It makes me happy knowing I am maybe making them feel good in some way I am in no way interested in them romantically. The problem is they never ask how I am doing or feeling
Speaker 2: or return any sort of compliment or bother to get to know me,
Speaker 2: it hurts me a little bit, but it's not a big deal as that is not the reason I speak to them. Sometimes I feel like maybe I'm just wasting my time by being friendly with these two. I don't want to stop, but I don't want to continue with any futile efforts at trying to build a work relationship. If it's not a mutual feeling, what should I do?
Speaker 2: Oh, and I'm somewhat new to the company, I've been with them for about six months now. I think the awkward newness has worn off already, sincerely Alex. See
Speaker 1: this is a tough one, and this is one of those ones where
Speaker 1: um Alex has actually already recognized the advice that we would give in this, He says, you know that well, i
Speaker 1: it does hurt me a little bit, but I don't it's not a big deal, I don't want to stop. Um and that's kind of that tough place to be in because it's a big enough deal that you wrote in your question, but you also recognize that, you know, it's not a big enough deal that,
Speaker 1: you know, oh, I really feel slighted and I want to have a big out with them about it and I agree, I don't think that he should call these ladies out on it. I think this is one of those times where you just continue being your most polite self and some of the world is going to accept it and some of the world isn't and some of the world is going to jump right on board and say, I want to be your friend and some of the world just isn't and I think it's it's just tough and it's a little annoying
Speaker 1: you also, you know, just like we say to the people who always um
Speaker 1: cancel on a host for a dinner party, that sort of thing you do get to choose and I understand that you've, you've told us you don't want to stop,
Speaker 1: but I think I would pull back. I would just say good morning to them. I wouldn't comment on their clothing all the time. And um, I wouldn't, you know, also I do think it's a little, you have to be careful about always choosing to comment on someone's looks, how they're looking.
Speaker 1: That I do think it's important sometimes to comment on the good work that they're doing or something like that just, and I'm sure you probably do when it's appropriate. But
Speaker 1: um, especially from a man to a woman, it can often make a woman, especially in the workplace feel like it's about her looks and that doesn't matter if you're attracted to her or not. It's just, this is just a thing
Speaker 1: from the women's lib movement that I remember watching a number of documentaries on that came up a lot.
Speaker 2: One of the great tests you can always apply yourself is do I offer the same complement to the men that I work with as closely and um, or to someone of any gender, would I be comfortable saying that exact same thing and not just what I'd be comfortable, but do I do
Speaker 1: I actually do
Speaker 2: it. And, and if you don't, then I, I love what you were just saying, compliment someone on their work, compliment them on their,
Speaker 2: their abilities and their actions as well as their appearance,
Speaker 1: just just make sure to spread it around a little bit, but
Speaker 1: you know, I I think I personally, if I were you and they are just never responding, never reciprocating. I just dial it back, I dial it back to a good morning, how are you today? And that's it and
Speaker 1: you know, it's more kind of a passing nicety than it is anything else.
Speaker 2: I would so agree with that to regulate your interaction based on what you're hearing from other people. And I would conclude um, lizzie and my eyes answer with a reminder that you are in such a good territory here um in our business etiquette training, we tell people to harness the power of the complement to do it well and to do it consistently and to keep it up.
Speaker 2: Never doubt the power of the sincere compliment. And I like how you focused on sincerity there because that's important and you want to feel good about it. I think it's why it's important to continue to respond to what you're what you're getting,
Speaker 2: but it's
Speaker 2: it's powerful beyond just how it impacts that relationship. Um The power of of expressing gratitude and of complimenting people is also in the mindset that it engenders in you and you really want to hold onto and maintain that positive mindset because you
Speaker 1: never say turn it around and stop.
Speaker 2: It's gonna make you the person that people appreciate being around and and the benefits that come from that our professional and personal. So so do keep it up, take heart and don't be dissuaded by an occasional cool response.
Speaker 1: I like this next question because it's um it feels futuristic to me, you know, it's like something that you would have seen on the Jetsons when you were a little kid. Alright, Hi, dan and lizzie, love your podcast. The topics are fun and you both make me laugh.
Speaker 1: One of my clients has a treadmill desk when he invites me into his office, he often remains on the treadmill walking as we talk.
Speaker 1: Should I remain standing? It feels weird to sit while he is walking. However, if I keep standing, I feel like I'm hovering uncomfortably advice, please thanks a this cracks me up just because it's like,
Speaker 1: it is such an etiquette question and it's such a weird place to be getting an etiquette question and I love it because it's like
Speaker 1: people ask us all the time, well, how do you come up with new etiquette? This is how new situation, what's going to be most courteous. I think it's about making the people in your office feel comfortable. So, personally, if I encounter you on a treadmill desk, I would sit down on your couch, just like, I always do
Speaker 1: you know, it's like, I I think that you do what's going to make you more comfortable if it's more comfortable for you to stand because your client is standing and walking
Speaker 1: in place on a treadmill at his desk then I think that you should stand um wouldn't offer to get on the treadmill and go for a walk with him. But I think if you feel more comfortable sitting I would take the seat.
Speaker 2: My answer is it depends, how long are you staying, what are you doing? How's your stamina? But yeah what's going to be comfortable? What makes sense for everybody if you're sitting, can you still maintain eye contact and interact with the person or does that take you out of the picture somehow? Um
Speaker 2: There's a this reminds me of something I learned in a business training years ago that if you want to keep people moving if you want to get them out of your office stand up every time they come in. Because it does it raises this question. It's hard for someone else to sit down if you're standing
Speaker 1: standing up. And it also it also instigates that feeling that you're about to leave because you're not in the room that you're spending time and you aren't seated and you're not like settled into the room.
Speaker 2: I think a treadmill desk is gonna kind of wave that a little bit we're going to sort of treat that as sit standing.
Speaker 1: Yeah I think that's I think it's truly uh that that if you if you have a treadmill desk you should invite your guest who comes into your office to be as comfortable to do whatever makes them feel comfortable to say, please have a seat if you like. Or if you want to, you know, stand
Speaker 1: walk in place with me joke or you know, you could make a joke about it that you understand. It's a little awkward and a little different and you could even say something like
Speaker 1: you know, hey, I hope you don't mind. I'm going to continue to walk on my treadmill or I'm going to continue to walk while we go through this meeting.
Speaker 2: You make a really good point whenever you're an early adopter or someone who's bringing a new technology or new device into your, a bit of an ambassador and it's up to you to help set the standard, help other people know what your expectations are. Please take a seat. This is going to be a second. Don't mind if I keep walking.
Speaker 1: Right. Exactly.
Speaker 1: So anyway, good luck with that. And we hope that you can find a way to be comfortable during these meetings.
Speaker 2: Our next question begins. Dear lizzie and dan, My name is Michael. I was wondering if you could help me with an etiquette question which I have struggled with ever since I moved to the United States from Russia many, many moons ago.
Speaker 2: You see every time I introduced myself to somebody new and disclosed to them that I am originally from the old soviet bloc. More often than not. The next thing that I usually hear is some variation of a Russian stereotype or an off color joke, something like, oh, you're from Russia, it must be really cold there. Or oh, you're from Russia, you must really like vodka
Speaker 2: or my favorite, Oh, you're from Russia. Do bears really ride unicycles there, darn you family guy.
Speaker 2: I understand that that is their attempt to connect with me on a personal level and I do appreciate the effort, but after hearing it over and over again, I'm getting tired of simply laughing it off and pivoting the conversation.
Speaker 2: Do you think that I should continue to do things business as usual or should I instead express to them in a nice way that I find such comments offensive. Love your show sincerely am.
Speaker 1: Oh, such a tough one because it's not gonna stop.
Speaker 1: It's not gonna, I mean ask dan and me and it's not, you know, Russia, but it's Vermont. So it's cold, it's maple syrup.
Speaker 1: It's pot. People joke about that
Speaker 2: too. Or
Speaker 1: like, you know, the nudist colonies and communes
Speaker 2: and you
Speaker 1: must be a hippie, like it's yeah,
Speaker 2: and I had a very similar discussion with puja the other night about when um,
Speaker 2: when people have trouble pronouncing a name from another country. And um oftentimes the instinct is to play with it a little bit to try to have some fun with it. And in some ways I think that's uh,
Speaker 2: it's, it's natural on one side of the equation to, to want to use a little humor to build some rapport and, and maybe get through what's an awkward moment or even if it's not an awkward moment, um,
Speaker 2: just as part of part of getting to know somebody. And it's hard to know exactly how that's going to be received. And I think this is a really good reminder that for some people, they hear that joke a lot or they hear some version of that joke a lot. And it's not always the easiest thing, as you were saying
Speaker 2: for them to challenge that in the moment. In fact, the polite, the etiquette thing to do is the thing that was mentioned right here in that, that that
Speaker 2: okay, you don't take it personal, you understand where it comes from and you pivot the conversation and that is, that's the good etiquette answer. I wanted to take this one step further and raised the idea that I think it's important to have these discussions generally, and that maybe in that moment isn't the time to have it. But if you have noticed this, that this is something that bothers you
Speaker 2: have the discussion when your audience is going to have the time and the, the attention to have it well, and, and start to have this conversation, other places have it on a podcast, that's your favorite etiquette podcast, have it at your next dinner party and
Speaker 2: it doesn't need to be fraud. It doesn't need to be difficult, but you can raise it and how
Speaker 1: would you bring it up? Let's go through some sample language just because it's tough. It's not easy to kind of imagine it and
Speaker 1: to give it both the lightness that you want because you don't want people to think that you're, you're so um enraged about it or that it's, it's so unbelievably offensive, but you also want them to know. But this isn't really like funny or it's not really like,
Speaker 1: you know,
Speaker 2: I think you do it when the, when the opportunity arises, maybe in some other context. The, the where you've come from has come up naturally in a different way or you're talking about your childhood or you're talking about your experience as someone who's moved to the states as a new american. Uh, you take that opportunity to raise that boy. It's happening to me all the time right now. Every time I tell someone, I'm from Russia, I get that family guy joke and if I hear that one more time I'm gonna, I'm gonna jump up and down, I'm going to write a you to cycle. Um,
Speaker 1: but you do it with a little bit of humor. I think like just like you just did, I think you have to, you have to do it with a little bit of humor as I think when you, I think if something was really truly offensive, we would always want you to stand up for yourself with that. Um, you know, and or if someone um
Speaker 1: did make a joke about one of the real tragedies in Russian history or something, you know, you can always always combat that with, you know, that was really difficult for my family, or that was a really hard time to have to watch my country go through or to learn if you weren't alive at the time that,
Speaker 1: you know, the tragedy happened to learn that my country had gone through. You know, that's that's one of the ones that weighs heavy on the Russian heart. You know, things like that are ways that when people undercut something that is actually really deeply personal to your, your country and where you came from,
Speaker 1: I always find that that's a good way to remind the person who's making the joke about it or making light of it, that, you know, hey,
Speaker 1: that was kind of a big deal.
Speaker 2: Yeah, it's a tricky topic because it gets to the heart of of who we are and to constantly have a distinction or a difference raised. It can feel like someone's always pointing out your your difference or your otherness to to use some of the language of the discourse and
Speaker 2: that can, that can accrue over time and can start to be hurtful in a way that the particular moment doesn't always, it seems out of proportion. I think it's it's important for all of us to remember that that's going on,
Speaker 2: I was thinking about the language of privilege and it comes up often when you're having this type of, of discussion. And one of the really important points to remember is that one of the privileges that is often discussed is the privilege of deciding when you have that dialogue or when you have that discourse and this person is being denied.
Speaker 2: That privilege of deciding when they get to talk about their origin or where they're from. And in what ways they
Speaker 1: was going to say more, even just in how they get to talk about it, because he's the one saying like, oh, I'm from the old soviet bloc and so he's actually bringing it up. But then there,
Speaker 1: you know, inexperienced with Russia and so they go for whatever point they might be able to connect on, which is, you know, cold
Speaker 2: vodka. Hey,
Speaker 1: I watch a lot of family guy, like it's, you know,
Speaker 1: at the end of the day, I think what Michael does understand is that he's frustrated because he does hear this so much. But that, um,
Speaker 1: I think he, I think he does understand that.
Speaker 1: I don't think these people are trying to be rude. I don't think there's any mala intention here. So I would invite you, Michael to instead um, clue them into all the other great things about Russia and use it as an opportunity to talk about it say,
Speaker 1: you know, like when they say it must be really cold over there you can go, you know it really is. But let me tell you it makes for the most amazing
Speaker 1: whatever I mean
Speaker 2: incredible
Speaker 1: or it makes me really appreciate all the things that you know I love about living here because it's warm or you know yeah, it's really cold. But man, I don't flinch in these, you know, wherever you're from winters,
Speaker 1: you know, find a way to kind of bring it back to the positive about it or
Speaker 1: you know like dan was just saying like you wouldn't believe how beautiful this one places even though it is so cold or you know yeah, I love vodka and the stuff here just doesn't cut it like you know even that little dig and like um could be a nice one to get in or um
Speaker 1: you know well with the family guy one that's where I would get really shaky and I would just say something like I would just wind up saying something like, oh do you get all of your cultural information from family guy like but that's just me being like really feisty in a moment of like frustration. So I probably wouldn't do that.
Speaker 1: But I do think just just take heart that these people are just trying to say something and they don't really have anything to go with and
Speaker 1: you know
Speaker 1: directly I think what you're doing is the right thing to do except the the comment laugh it off and then pivot the conversation to what you love to talk about with them. Well, we really hope that that helps and that um hopefully you get a few, a few less Russian stereotypes coming your way in the near future.
Speaker 1: Um who knows? Maybe you'll run into someone who's listened to the podcast,
Speaker 1: but best of luck to you, Michael,
Speaker 1: you
Speaker 2: hear that?
Speaker 1: She says you're not as rude as you used to be. A
Speaker 2: great big thanks to everyone for sending in your questions and remember we love updates if we answered your question on the show or if you have a comment about one of our questions, feel free to send it in.
Speaker 2: You can also submit your next question too awesome etiquette. Emily post dot com or send it in via facebook or twitter, just use the hashtag awesome etiquette. So we know you want it on the show.
Speaker 1: So we're doing a little bit of a break in our regular chauffeur for something special. I I got this email from a woman and it wasn't a question
Speaker 1: and it wasn't really a salute, but I just decided I had to share it and I didn't want to take up a whole post script to do it because I really want to talk about the Children's etiquette in our post script.
Speaker 1: So this is just, I had to share this Hello, lizzie and dan, I've only recently discovered your podcast and I'm completely hooked. Thank you for sharing your etiquette wisdom. Several months ago my husband picked up Emily post's etiquette. I'm so hoping it's an 18th edition and not like 1/15 edition, but you know what happens
Speaker 1: so that we could start teaching our young Children ages 74 and six months old,
Speaker 1: proper etiquette as they grow. We occasionally read and discuss a section over the dinner table and it has led to many wonderful conversations about how to behave and treat others. A while back we covered the section on introductions and handshakes. We practice introducing ourselves and each other and helped our older Children to learn how to properly shake hands.
Speaker 1: Last week I took my four year old son and his babysitter to the park.
Speaker 1: We were all alone until another family pulled up in a little boy around my son's age, jumped out of their car, excited at the prospect of a new friend. My son walked over stuck out his hand and said, hi, I'm jones, what's your name? It's so nice to meet you. Would you like to play with me?
Speaker 1: They grinned, shook hands and spent the next hour playing together. I was one proud mama. Thanks for all you do sincerely kayla.
Speaker 1: I just thought that was so great And after we had taught the Children's etiquette program. I thought what a great way to segue into our post script today. I'm
Speaker 2: just beaming. Isn't
Speaker 1: that wonderful,
Speaker 2: awesome
Speaker 2: it is. And it's
Speaker 1: a little kids and when you soar when you picture
Speaker 2: a little kid you see how well it works. It really
Speaker 1: is. These are such
Speaker 2: fundamental because you just walk over
Speaker 1: and give someone your hand. Hi, I'm jones to be my friend. It's like, it's so simple. It's not that simple as an adult,
Speaker 1: it's so simple and you know, we spent a week teaching. Um,
Speaker 1: well I wasn't really teaching but participating in, you know, the Children's etiquette train, the trainer and the trainers really do, you always get someone who at some point asks,
Speaker 1: does it really work? Can you really teach this to a four year old? And this is such wonderful proof of that. You can, you don't need to be an etiquette expert to do it. You just need to take the time to practice with your kids. We
Speaker 2: thought this would be a great opportunity to share just a couple of the key points from our Children's etiquette training and
Speaker 2: So there were three real fundamental concepts. I wanted to share one
Speaker 2: Cindy sending calls it the golden rule of parenting and it's so simple. She says, be the parent that you want your kids to be. We used to say model the behavior that you want to see and then we decided, you know, it's really not something you can put on and take off again, your kids are watching you all the time, You're, it you're the model. It's why it's such an awesome responsibility. It's why it's so scary and exciting and, and everything that it is and it really is the golden rule of parenting. Your kids are watching all the time.
Speaker 1: So the next
Speaker 2: thing from the parenting program that I, that I really want to share is the ages and stages concept and the idea sounds so cute, We say no know what to expect and then expect it and knowing what to expect of kids. Um, it's really important to know where they're at in their social development that you can't expect a little four year old who's scared to come out from behind mom's need to do this kind of a handshake a more precocious four year old, a four year old is almost five who's ready to charge across the playground and say hi to their friends, that they're ready to learn that kind of self introduction. So it's about knowing what to expect and what, when to expect it. Um, we approach etiquette as social skills, these are fundamental social skills
Speaker 2: and if you think about the developmental stages that anybody goes through, there are certain social skills that are appropriate at certain ages and stages. So, so that's fundamental, you gotta think about where your kids at and what skills are appropriate for them. The final real tip, I like to give parents has to do with how you communicate the principles of consideration and respect and honesty, that lizzie and I are always talking about being so important and
Speaker 2: one of the things about that ages and stages approach is that there are ages and there are stages of kids development where they're very concrete thinkers, so to help them out with a concept like consideration or respect or even honesty, although that's one that that many kids have a pretty intuitive sense
Speaker 1: of,
Speaker 2: you've got to give them really concrete examples, you've gotta build scenarios and situations that they can understand.
Speaker 2: Talk to them about people in their lives, talk to them about experiences that they have in situations that they find themselves in it and build those concrete examples and situations. So you talk to your kids, you talk talk, talk to them and you talk to them at the level that they're at, but you keep talking to them and you talk to them like they're the people that you want them to be and they're going to turn into those people.
Speaker 2: So what might that look like? Let's talk about a concrete example for talking to kids, one of the, one of the most classic etiquette questions, how do I get my kid to write a thank you note, How do I get them invested in that? So Cindy sending has a story that she tells to help kids understand the importance of a thank you note. She starts off with an example where she asks them to imagine themselves in an art class
Speaker 2: and they've worked on a painting and they've spent a lot of time
Speaker 2: painting this painting. And you can really develop the example into whatever type of artwork that your kid likes to do and they spend some time on it. Maybe they bring it home and show it to you and you tell them it's beautiful and you decide to frame it together and that they're going to send it to their favorite grandparent or their favorite uncle
Speaker 2: and they spend some time they wrap it up, they package it, you help them write the address on it and get the postage and take it to the post office and put it in the mail and you send it off and there can be some real uh time spent developing the example so that so that there's some anticipation built and you put it in the mail and off it goes
Speaker 2: and then
Speaker 2: nothing,
Speaker 2: no response, no reply,
Speaker 2: no word.
Speaker 2: You can ask your your child how they, how that makes them feel and what they think they should do.
Speaker 2: Um I'll tell you a little secret. Having done this example with a lot of different groups of kids, most groups of kids will volunteer that you should not send anything. Some groups will say, well you should call and find out. Maybe they didn't get it. They probably didn't get it. What if it didn't get there and there's some concern about that, but kids can understand both the feeling of
Speaker 2: of unfulfilled expectation that you hear something when you've taken the time to do something nice for someone. And also the concern that maybe something didn't work, that may be all that effort was for nothing. And and and those are
Speaker 2: the exact same feelings that grandparents feel when they send a gift that isn't replied to. And it can really help kids understand the importance of writing that thank you note. But instead of talking to them about how it's important to consider grandma, you build that example where they understand what it would feel like if someone didn't show them that same consideration. It can really, it can really tie that message together in a way that makes sense for someone that's not prepared to talk about consideration as an abstract concept. Yet
Speaker 1: with respect, it's like, I think people worry about being able to talk to kids about consideration and respect. But you know, consideration is that that thinking of others around you and we were teaching kids that all the time when we're saying, you know, that wasn't very nice. How would you feel if that happened to you? You know, those are the basic the early understandings of of consideration and
Speaker 1: you know, respect, kids learn at a very early age, even in preschool of, you know, respecting materials, we don't break things, We don't damage them. You know, we respect someone's space, We don't draw on their drawing. You know, these are the little the little kind of first introductions
Speaker 1: to consideration and respect that they get and it always blows my mind
Speaker 1: that four year olds are able to understand this. And what's funny is that adults,
Speaker 1: even adults with kids forget that you can you can talk about it and that you are building these foundations of etiquette into your child's life. But taking that moment dan keeps saying, talk, talk, talk,
Speaker 2: talking
Speaker 1: about it is reinforcing it by when an example of it happens, you know,
Speaker 1: like um they say they're sorry,
Speaker 1: that's that's showing consideration and respect. And you can say that that was really respectful for you to to to say you were sorry to your sister for drawing on her drawing or you know, Jayden, I love the fact that you um offered your crayons to your sister because it showed that you understood that she might like them and that was really considerate of you.
Speaker 1: And those are the little ways that you can build consideration and respect into their daily vocabulary so that they can start getting the association there.
Speaker 2: Three big tips. Golden rule of parenting, you know what to expect and then expect it and think about how to translate those core principles of consideration, respect and honesty into language. That's going to make sense for your kids. Whatever stage they're at
Speaker 1: social
Speaker 2: courtesy does pay, doesn't it?
Speaker 1: Thanks thanks.
Speaker 2: We like to end each show by acknowledging all of the good etiquette, that's going on out in the world with a little etiquette salute. Today's etiquette salute begins Hello dan and lizzie. First of all I wanted to thank you both for your wonderful podcast. I love to listen to it in the morning as I'm getting ready for my day. I am writing to give an awesome etiquette shout out to my boss. Elizabeth
Speaker 2: Elizabeth hired me straight out of college and has put a lot of time and effort into helping me get my professional career off to a positive start the other day I noticed something that she has done consistently but I have always taken for granted as she moves up in the company. I'm taking on many responsibilities she once had
Speaker 2: when these responsibilities involve communicating with someone I have not met. Elizabeth always takes the time to send an email of formal introduction to let them know that I will be their point of contact. From then on it is a relief that I don't have to awkwardly introduce myself during a business communication and I'm sure my new business contacts,
Speaker 2: I feel like she has not forgotten them and are relieved
Speaker 2: that they don't have to make guesses about who they should contact. There are many, many other examples of Elizabeth's compassionate and considerate leadership but I thought this was a good example of bringing old school politeness into modern communication. She has been an ideal role model for me in this respect. I often hear about horrible bosses and I am so grateful that I have a great one,
Speaker 2: All the best Sammy Sammy, thank you so much. We do hear a lot of complaints about bosses and it's really nice to hear someone appreciating their boss for something that deserves some recognition. Thank you so much for sharing
Speaker 1: that with. Well now wasn't that better? Look at the effect of a little politeness. Well that's our show for today as always, thank you for listening and spending some of your day with us. We hope you have a wonderful and polite rest of your week
Speaker 1: and don't forget there's no show without you. So send us your questions, your salutes and your suggestions to awesome etiquette Emily post dot com.
Speaker 1: And please please please, if you like what you hear, subscribe to us on itunes and leave us a review. You can also tweet about the show to all your friends and family are posted on facebook. We would be so grateful on facebook where the Emily Post Institute on twitter,
Speaker 1: I'm at lizzie a post
Speaker 2: and I'm at daniel underscore post
Speaker 1: or you can visit our website soon to be updated
Speaker 1: at Emily Post dot com. Our theme music was composed and performed by bob Wagner and our show is edited and produced by hans futile