Business cards are a staple when it comes to moving about the corporate ladder. We use them to introduce ourselves, build credibility, and establish a connection with your new acquaintance. If you’re new to business cards, you probably have some questions. “Is there any form of etiquette when it comes to this stuff?” In fact, yes, there is. Here are some basic things to remember.
Always be prepared. Have your business cards in hand. There’s nothing more embarrassing than being asked for your card and having nothing to give. Whatever your reason may be, the other party would find it unprofessional. Worse, they may even feel offended.
Handle cards with care. Put your cards in a small case to keep them from dirt and damage. Dirty cards will make you look untidy and disorganized. The same goes if you forget where you put them.
As for business cards given to you, make sure you at least briefly acknowledge the contents of the card. It shows that you give importance to the information given to you, and in turn, the person handing it out. Don’t scribble notes on the card, especially in their presence. (Unless it’s the relevant information from them) Their card was made with effort and expectations – it’s not your scratch paper.
There are also suitable manners when handing out cards. When handing or receiving them, it is better to use your right hand. This is even more useful in international business meetings. When you give them your card, have the information face them so the receiving party doesn’t have to flip it or turn it around.
Give them out with discretion. Nobody really needs ten business cards. People will perceive that your cards are easy to give around and will be perceived to have less value.
Wait for someone to request your card, or ask for theirs to receive a response. Don’t be too aggressive or pushy in giving your cards.
Update your business cards. Are you still using the address on the card? Is your contact number still up to date? This and all other relevant information should be checked. Whenever any relevant changes need to be made, don’t hesitate to do so. You don’t want to lose any opportunities just because that important client dialed the wrong number and gave up.
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