The LandaJob Blog:
Expert Perspectives and Industry Trends

Practicing Professional Courtesy

Too much to do, too little time to do it.  Short deadlines.  Understaffed departments.  Meetings.  Lots of meetings.  As time pressure grows, something has to give.  And too often, it’s the “little” things we stop doing.  But these “little” things are what may actually be the difference maker for us and for the company who employs us.

Here are some basic professional courtesy practices:

*Return phone calls — if you call someone and leave a message, your expectation and hope is that you will get a return call.  The same goes for people who call you.  If it’s a legitimate business voice mail, even from a salesman, make it a routing practice to return the call.

*Return emails – same principle applies as above.  Even a short response or a “no thanks” is better than no response at all.

*Update job candidates – it may surprise you, but many job seekers who interview for a position with a company never hear back from the person who interviewed them.  Make it a practice to personally call everyone that interviewed and let them know the outcome.  At the very least, contact them via email.  They will appreciate it and say good things about you and your company.

*Update co-workers – ever been in a meeting and you hear some news that everyone else already knew?  Not good.  When you get news that your co-workers need to know, share it broadly and quickly.

*Deliver bad news as quickly as good news – it’s never fun or easy to share bad news, but it’s the right thing to do and it’s the right thing to do it timely.  You’ll feel better too because you eliminate the dread factor from your mind.  Sometimes “just do it” is the exact right solution.


Be professional.  Be courteous.  It will pay you back.

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