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Preface

Preface

“Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anybody expects of you. Never excuse yourself.”

Henry Ward Beecher

Knowing your job is an important step in getting ahead at work, but being good at your job may not be enough. You must also be thought of as a professional business person. Being a professional is more than being technically proficient. It’s being able to communicate effectively, interact with others appropriately, and develop long-term, mutually beneficial relationships.

We wrote this book to help you build your reputation as a true professional. If you practice the tips, you will develop the skills you need to succeed. We suggest that you take things slowly. Choose one tip to start with and when it becomes a habit, add one or two more.

It takes about three weeks of consistent practice to change a habit. Start by writing down a specific behavioral change you are willing to make. Keep your written goal visible all day. Ask someone you trust to give you feedback when he or she sees you improving. As you master one change, you can move on to another. Making small improvements can result in major positive changes.

People with a reputation of professionalism are seen as those who are flexible and want to learn. As you change some of your habits, you will be noticed as someone others can depend on and trust.





Marilyn Manning, Ph. D. Patricia Haddock


Most of the information in this book applies to North America and Europe. If your work takes you outside of these areas, make sure you check business etiquette in other countries. See also “Tip 49: Practice Intercultural Courtesy” later in this book.

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