Manner Monday: Business Etiquette Q&A

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Every Monday Blogging4Jobs invites our resident Etiquette Expert, CareySue Vega (@Etiquette101), to share tips when it comes to etiquette in the workplace during our own Manner Monday segment. This segment is for the practitioner who is focused on creating a more etiquette-friendly environment. 


Our company recently participated in a charity golf tournament, which included a seated lunch afterwards in the clubhouse for the awards and auction. I was surprised to see so many of my peers with their hats on during the lunch. Am I feeling old, or have the rules changed? I thought men were supposed to take their hats off at the table. – John

A – For starters, do you live in Oklahoma City? Your question hits a little close to home, and I’m hoping it wasn’t prompted after seeing me with my son recently after a baseball game at our local pizza place!?!? As we were leaving the restaurant is when I realized what just went down. Yep, there was the Etiquette lady… with her son and his friends…eating dinner…with his baseball hat on!!! Guess I’ve got some work to do.

I digress… back to your question – In a nutshell, yes, men are supposed to remove their hats at the table, and yes, the rules have relaxed quite a bit, but have not necessarily changed.

The game of golf is one that is steeped in etiquette, integrity, good sportsmanship, and honesty. It’s no secret that many people play golf for business. It’s a great way to gain an advantage with your clients where a level of trust and confidence can organically occur just by being honest and truthful with your game, and keeping your temper in check.

Many times the golf game concludes with a trip inside the clubhouse for celebratory drinks or a bite to eat. So what’s a player to do with his hat? Many clubs have a house rule of ‘no hats’ indoors. But with changing times, and relaxed dress codes, the ‘no hat’ rule has started to fade. As soon as you walk inside, take off your hat and look around. A good rule of thumb is to follow the lead of the senior members who are already inside – I bet their hats are off. If the club does not have a rule (and it looks like the club you attended did not), then I would err on the side of etiquette and remove it anyway. It’s a small gesture of respect that when noticed, is truly appreciated and remembered.

I would use this as a great learning opportunity to remind everyone of how they represent the company. I’m sure your team wants to stand out above the competition; this would be an easy way to do so. A reminder that the logo on their shirt is just as effective as the one on their hat, and maybe more so when others see them lead the way with a simple gesture of removing their cap.

And if you have someone who is trying to use the excuse they have horrific hat hair and they’ll scare everyone. Suggest they keep a comb in their pocket and sneak into the locker room for a quick taming of the tresses.

Do you have an Etiquette question you would like answered? Please leave a comment below and we’ll select for the next Q&A. 


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