Monday, April 7, 2008

The Name Game

People wince inwardly when you mispronounce their names. It is a serious breach of business etiquette. If you don’t know the correct pronunciation of someone’s name, ask! If you are still in doubt, ask apologetically for the person to repeat it. Jokes or wisecracks about a person’s name are not funny and are offensive. If your own name is difficult to pronounce, help the person who is trying to pronounce it—and botching the job. You can smile and say: “It’s a tough one, isn’t it?” Pronounce it clearly without making a big deal about it. That just calls too much attention to the fact that the other person has made an error.

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