Etiquette is in Style
You know the person that chews loudly, with their lips coming apart at every chomp? Or the person who sits at a dinner table texting, texting, texting, anyone who is not at the table, never once raising their head? Or how about the person who never EVER uses manners?
These are things that remind us why etiquette is not, and will never be, outdated.
Modeling and acting practically go hand-in-hand with etiquette. You must set a standard of politeness, especially when being interviewed, auditioning for roles or even just during everyday interactions with other people. While there are many different branches of etiquette, here are a few that are very important for in the modeling industry:
Social Etiquette
Behavior in society means everything. Appropriate actions lead to respect and possibly a booking! This refers to everyday manners like saying “thank you” after actions that you consider a nice gesture (like someone holding a door for you, someone handing you something you dropped, etc.).
Today social networking is an important communication tool for people of all ages. It is important to use social networking sites to your advantage. Don’t post personal information if it could hurt someone’s impression of you. Your online reputation is just as important as your professional reputation.
 
Corporate Etiquette
How do you think you should behave in your workplace? Be friendly! Smile all the time! The word ‘outgoing’ will become your new best friend, attached to your hip 24/7. In fact, if you feel like you are being too outgoing, you’re wrong. Keep going! Ask questions, ask how to improve and always try your hardest.
Another important part of corporate etiquette is learning how to take criticism. Someone may tell you that something you are doing is wrong. Do not panic or become upset. They only want to help make you better. They want you to succeed! Keep trying and you are sure to be on your way to success.
 
Dining Etiquette
Did the first sentence of this blog make you cringe? Good! It should have. When eating, it is important to be extremely mindful of others. Say “please” and “thank you”. Sit up straight. Chew with your mouth CLOSED! No one likes a chomper. Elbows off the table! Do I sound like your parents yet? Good. You have grown up eating around people you are comfortable with all your life. But when you start working in a professional industry things are different. You must, must, MUST have manners at the table.
Barbizon teaches modeling and acting techniques, but the etiquette you use at a dinner table (especially when you are in public or in a professional setting) is also very important to the perception people have of you. Pay attention and practice table manners when you are home. It makes a difference in your composition.
Telephone Etiquette
Whether you are talking on the phone, texting someone or working on a phone interview, telephone etiquette needs to be there. It is always important to think first before you speak when you’re on the phone. Stay away from saying “um,” “like” or “uhhhhhh” during your conversations. It is important that the person on the other end gets a good impression from you even if they cannot see you. Also be conscious of texting. Texting while someone is talking to you or while you should be listening during a meeting is rude. Turn your phone on silent or even better off because you will be more attentive. You will be a better listener for this. I promise!
To recap: Practice at home, always say thank you and never stop being outgoing. Nothing bad comes from having incredible etiquette, especially in this industry. You leave a good impression among those surrounding you by showing how polite and respectful you are. Not only will good etiquette help you in the industry, but it will also help you become an better person wherever your goals and dreams take you!

Jamie Rothberg | Writer | Chicago

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