The Complete Idiot's Guide to Modern Manners Fast-Track

Overview

Technology is changing society faster than anyone could have imagined even a few short years ago. People share intimate details to hundreds of acquaintances online, yet they are stumped when it comes to writing a simple thank-you note. They talk, text, and surf on their phones constantly but seem oblivious to the needs of the people who are right in front of them. The Complete Idiot's Guide® to Modern Manners, Fast Track, helps people navigate the uncertain waters of modern social behavior and gives them tips for...

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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Modern Manners Fast-Track

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Overview

Technology is changing society faster than anyone could have imagined even a few short years ago. People share intimate details to hundreds of acquaintances online, yet they are stumped when it comes to writing a simple thank-you note. They talk, text, and surf on their phones constantly but seem oblivious to the needs of the people who are right in front of them. The Complete Idiot's Guide® to Modern Manners, Fast Track, helps people navigate the uncertain waters of modern social behavior and gives them tips for overcoming the most common miserable moments they're likely to encounter. In it, readers learn how to:

  • Make a good first impression in person, over the phone, in print, and online.
  • Practice good table manners in a world of buffets, informal meals, and a proliferation of restricted diets.
  • Get along with neighbors and their pets, kids, habits, and hobbies.
  • Maintain harmony in the office despite the more casual nature of the workplace.
  • Master the social possibilities of online networking, texting, and smartphones while avoiding embarrassing faux pas.
  • Whip out the old-fashioned pen for written correspondence that makes an impact.
  • Communicate comfortably in person, including small talk, defusing tense situations, and avoiding subjects that are still too uncomfortable for polite conversation.
  • Navigate the difficult situations that arise when traveling and out on the town.
  • Maintain genuine respect for others' differences and disabilities.
  • Be the model of manners at celebrations of life's milestone moments, including weddings and births.
  • Get the right answer to all gift quandaries

People are busy and no longer have the time or inclination to comb through Emily Post. This quick book helps readers get the answers they need so they can get on with life.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781615642328
  • Publisher: Alpha Books
  • Publication date: 12/31/2012
  • Series: Complete Idiot's Guide Series
  • Pages: 160
  • Sales rank: 681,713
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.20 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Mary M. Mitchell is a nationally known etiquette expert who coaches individuals toward personal and professional success through social, presentation, and communication skills. She is the author of seven acclaimed books, published in seven languages, including Class Acts and The Complete Idiot's Guide® to Etiquette, Third Edition. She also writes newspaper columns, such as the nationally syndicated "Ms. Demeanor," as well as her "Nice Matters" column for the Seattle Times. She is also an experienced, professional on-camera and live radio personality. She was co-host of Nice Matters, a weekly commentary on manners broadcast by Comcast, as well as three hour-long programs about business and social etiquette for major PBS affiliates. She has appeared numerous times on the major network morning shows. Ms. Mitchell has also brought her message and skills to the public as a speaker and keynoter.

Since 1989, her company The Mitchell Organization has worked with hundreds of clients from coast to coast, through targeted communications, service, performance, and social training. Her work in customer and client services has been met with particular acclaim from multinational organizations in the legal, accounting, and medical professions, and the hospitality industry.

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Table of Contents

1 First Impressions 1

Face-to-Face Interactions 2

What People See 2

Shaking Hands 4

Introducing Yourself and Others 5

What People Hear 7

When the Initial Interaction Is Not in Person 8

On Paper 8

Online 8

On the Telephone 9

2 Twenty-First-Century Table Manners 11

Table Settings and Using Flatware 12

Table Manners 101 14

Difficult Foods, Preferences, and Intolerances 16

Some Useful Caveats 17

Braving the Buffet 18

3 The Modern Home Front 19

Who Makes the Rules? 20

Dealing with Divorce 21

Getting Along with Your Blended Family 22

When Your Children Don't Look at All Like You 23

Accommodations in the Multigenerational Family 25

Same-Sex Parents: No Apologies, No Excuses 26

Foster Families 27

4 Neighborly Ways 29

New Neighbors 30

Helping Out 31

Noise and Smelly Stuff 31

Talking Trash 33

Pet Peeves 34

Garage Sales 36

5 Manners at Work 39

Cubicle Etiquette 40

Food in the Office 42

Doors, Elevators, and Escalators 44

Office Parties 45

6 Email and Social Media Savvy 49

Email Is Eternal 50

General Email Principles 50

Business Email 52

Phones 55

Cell Phones and Smartphones 57

Texting 59

Voicemail 60

Social Networking 62

Posting Pictures 63

Friending and Unfriending on Facebook 64

Tweeting 64

Blogging and Commentary 65

7 The Write Way 67

Thank-You Notes 68

Condolence Letters 70

Letters of Apology 72

Letters of Congratulations 73

A Few Points for Any Letter 73

8 How to Say It in Person 75

Small Talk 75

Conversation Triggers 76

Body Language 78

Giving and Receiving Compliments 78

Calming Communications 79

Stop the Gossip 81

Talk Taboos 82

Handling Invitations and Requests Face-to-Face 83

9 On the Go 85

Cars 85

The Courteous Driver 86

The Courteous Passenger 86

Taxis 87

Trains and Buses 87

Airplanes 88

Getting to the Gate 89

Boarding 89

Being a Good Houseguest 91

At the Hotel 92

10 Out and About 95

Theater, Concerts, and Movies 96

Sporting Events 98

Restaurants and Happy Hours 98

Museums, Churches, and Galleries 99

At the Gym 100

Shopping 101

11 Courtesy for the Disabled 103

Physical Disabilities 104

Mobility Impairment 104

Obesity 106

Sensory Disabilities 107

Hearing Loss and Speaking Impairments 107

Visual Impairment 108

Mental Disabilities 110

12 The Circle of Life 111

Beginning with Babies 112

Christenings 112

Brit 113

First Communion 113

Birthdays 114

Coming-of-Age Events 114

Confirmation 114

Bar and Bat Mitzvah 115

The Quinceanera 115

Nuptials 116

Before the Wedding 116

The Wedding-Who Pays for What 117

The Wedding Party-Who Does What 118

Destination Weddings 121

Different Types of Wedding Ceremonies 121

Same-Sex Weddings and Commitment Ceremonies 124

Retirement 125

Funerals 126

13 Giving and Receiving Gifts 129

Some Gift Guidelines 130

Acknowledging Gifts 131

To Regift, or Not to Regift? 131

Declining Gifts 132

E-Gifting, Registries, Gift Cards, and Gift Certificates 133

Hostess Gifts 134

Surprise Gifts 135

Holiday Tipping 135

Appendixes

Resources 139

Index 141

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