LETITIA BALDRIGE'S COMPLETE GUIDE TO EXECUTIVE MANNERS by Letitia Baldrige

LETITIA BALDRIGE'S COMPLETE GUIDE TO EXECUTIVE MANNERS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

At long last, a book that doesn't advise executives to knife, bully or connive their way up the corporate ladder. Baldrige contends that grace, sensitivity and considerateness make for an organization that attracts customers as well as better personnel. In short, corporate civility from the top down is ""cost-effective."" The first section, ""Human Relations at Work,"" is an invaluable guide on proper conduct in just about any business situation imaginable from how to run meetings, write memos and letters, make and receive telephone calls, dress for various business occasions, handle criticism gracefully, etc. Admittedly, some sample conversations and letters sound as if they were lifted from a yuppie satire (to break the ice with a dinner partner one might say, ""It's a real treat having crabmeat cocktail like this, isn't it?""). Although her chapters on international business manners and how male and female executives should interact may not break new ground, they are filled with information and commonsense advice. In Greece don't make the okay sign (thumb and finger touching in a circle). It's an obscene gesture there. When going alone to a hotel bar, the female executive should bring her briefcase and shuffle a few papers to discourage unwelcome advances. The section on business protocol is fairly grandiose for the average organization (Baldrige, once social secretary to Claire Boothe Luce and later Jackie Kennedy's Chief of Staff in the White House, even includes proper conduct when the Star Spangled Banner is played). But it's replete with sample checklists for company events, proper stationery, suggestions for innovative entertaining on the small as well as the grand scale, proper forms of address, etc. It also includes thoughts on executive retirements, anniversary celebrations and business gift giving. Like society as a whole, the business environment is changing rapidly. By codifying what is expected and accepted as proper business manners, Baldrige's Baedeker of politesse should make for smoother, more pleasant and even more rewarding personal relations from boardroom to mailroom.

Pub Date: Oct. 28th, 1985
Publisher: Rawson