The Dapper Gentleman is a blog that contains more than just articles on clothing and shaving. It wraps around into areas of the gentleman’s life that are connected with his personal style. For example today we are going to discuss the topic of proper etiquette. A man’s personal style and etiquette go hand-in-hand, especially when it comes to expanding your social atmosphere.
You may look dapper as a gentleman and have amazing confidence, but if your social etiquette is poor, you’ve already lost. In today’s society we have somehow put the gentleman’s etiquette on hold or replaced it with a more “open” or “casual” attitude. We have stripped away the power of being sensitive to others by the way we carelessly interact with each other. Here are some simple, be powerful elements to consider adding to your dapper toolbox.
Guest Etiquette. When you get invited to dinner, a party or someone’s house be sure to call them and confirm that you’ll be attending. It’s important to always RSVP. RSVP stands for “Repondez s’il vous plait,” French for “Please Respond.” If a host or hostess invites you to their event sometimes an RSVP is requested. There are a lot of men who think that you only need to RSVP if you’re attending. You need to RSVP even if you’re not attending.
Second, if you’re attending be sure to offer to bring something such as a salad or dessert to take the pressure off the host or hostess. Third, bring a small gift such as a bottle of wine or a bouquet of flowers. Fourth, come prepared to have a conversation. Put your cell phone away and talk to other human beings face-to-face. Fifth, don’t over stay your welcome. When it feels like the right time to leave…leave. Finally, follow-up by writing the host or hostess a “Thank you” card. That’s right follow up with an old-fashioned hand written card. It’s rude to send them a “Thank you” by way of a text message, Facebook post, or even over the phone.
Table Manners. A dapper gentleman is a man who understands table etiquette and demonstrates it well. First, there is no need for a cell phone at the table. Put it away, unless you’re expecting an immediate family death. Second, if a lady is joining you for dinner seat her first and then yourself. Third, when you sit down immediately place your napkin on your lap. Fourth, before diving in and devouring your food, wait to see if a prayer is offered. Then allow the lady or guest to begin eating first and then yourself.
Fifth, keep your elbows off the table. Sixth, chew like a gentleman, not a wild animal. Learn to take pauses in between bites and never chew with your mouth open. Sixth, when using butter or other condiments for your food, place them on your plate and then onto your food. Never place them directly on your food and then pass the utensil. Finally, if you’re eating in someone’s house and find a hair in your meal, quietly remove the hair and say nothing.
Conversation Etiquette. In today’s society and culture we spend a great deal of time social networking more than actually talking with people face-to-face. Because this can become habit or ritual for us, it is important for the dapper gentleman to lead the way in this area of conversation. First, give the individual your full attention. Make that person feel like they’re the only one in the room. Don’t let your eyes wander around the room while in a conversation or fidget with your watch or cell phone.
Second, engage in wholesome conversation. Ask them good questions. Don’t talk about yourself. Let them ask you things about you. You never want to be responsible for complaining, criticizing, gossip, backbiting, or profanity. Third, never try and tell a better story than the other. Learn to listen and compliment. Sometimes silence or encouragement is the better choice. Finally, have a few good entertaining stories to share. Stay away from lying and making up stories to impress others. Those will come back to bite you.
House Guest Manners. A true gentleman knows how to be a proper houseguest. Sure your host may declare that their home is your home, but keep a few important things in mind when staying with someone else for a few days. First, bring money for groceries. A dapper gentleman always offers to genuinely pay for his expenses. Your host may not accept it, but it’s proper to always offer. Second, show up on time. If you tell your host a specific time you’ll be arriving, do your best to arrive on time. If you’re going to be late, call ahead and let them know.
Third, bring your host a gift, a nice bouquet of flowers or wine are great options. Forth, keep the area you’re staying in neat and clean. You’re cleanliness speaks of your personal character. Fifth, share your schedule a little with your host in case they are planning to spend time with you. Sixth, always ask. If you need something, don’t snoop around for it. Simply ask for it. Seventh, when you leave be sure to strip your bed and make a nice small pile for your host. Finally, follow-up by sending a “Thank you” card.
Guys I know there is a lot here, but I have seen to many men dress well, but fail in the department of etiquette. Join with me in bringing dapper back not only to our personal style and wardrobe, but in the area of etiquette.