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Busines Protocol and Etiquette, Social Etiquette, Wedding Etiquette

“Say Hello to My Little Friend” – Greet Your Guests at Every Event

Seasons Greetings!  Literally.  We are well into the holiday season and our schedules are filling up with various festivities, some of which you might be hosting.  The act of greeting is one area of event protocol that you do not want to overlook during this season, or any other.  So, why is it a big deal and how do we go about it?

Recently, I attended a jewelry boutique launch event executed so beautifully that everything done right stood out to me.  In particular, one main quality of the event was that each guest was warmly greeted, invited to take a photo with the hostess, and offered refreshments upon arrival.  There was an overall feeling that everyone was a valued customer even before they made a purchase.  This shared perception made the venture a great success.  This is an example we can draw from for our holiday parties and just about any event we throw.

To some people it sounds like an obvious feature of all events.  Of course we all welcome guests. Who would leave attendees wandering around, trying to figure out where exactly they belong or searching aimlessly for the restroom?  Then again, there are those who question why greetings are a necessity at all.  Why can’t folks find their own way around and introduce themselves to each other?  Just follow the crowd or the signs.  Yet, we can ALL think of times when we walked into a party, conference, wedding reception, launch, or gathering and had no idea in which direction to proceed.  Feeling lost, we wondered if we were actually in the right place.  If the event is purely social, friends may forgive their host(ess), but who wants their friends to feel out of place?  If the event is business related then this just might be the turn-off that causes the host(ess) to miss out on a sale or investment.

It is completely understandable that often when you are the one hosting the event, it is impossible to stand post at the entrance if you do not have a planner designated to oversee the happenings.  So there you are running around tending to a million issues and the needs of guests who previously arrived, wondering what’s going on at the door.  What’s the solution?  In this case, you can simply assign the task of greeting to someone else.  It can be a friend or acquaintance for social matters, or someone you hire or an unpaid intern for business matters.  Whomever you choose, it should be someone who you trust to be pleasant, sociable and helpful.  The goal is to make sure your guests feel like they are important to you (personally or professionally) and that you want them there.



6 thoughts on ““Say Hello to My Little Friend” – Greet Your Guests at Every Event

  1. Very true Dr. Jai. The more welcome I feel the more receptive I am to coming back, lets say, to a business because, as you stated, it shows you appreciate me before I have even committed to make a purchase. And the simple fact is, the more genuine and nice you are, you are just more inclined the customer is to make return trips to a business (with friends too!). On a personal level, that warmness makes us feel comfortable and that that person cares for us. You know, another nice thing is when someone remembers your name, (and although I am the absolute worst at this, I can tell you I remember faces and where I have met you -I need some dern flashcards or something!) and commits to using it, again, shows a level of care for the individual.

    Posted by Margaret | December 7, 2011, 9:54 am
  2. This is such a good point! I have definitely been to friends’ homes – at a party or gathering – and not felt “attended” to for long stretches of time. In addition to a greeter, the host (ess) might also want to consider appointing people to direct you to refreshments – food and drinks – as guests often feel uncomfortable helping themselves. You reduce the risk of your guest wandering around alone, hungry and thirsty!!

    Posted by Leena Roy | December 7, 2011, 5:09 pm
  3. Leena, putting someone in charge of refreshments at formal or bigger events is a great idea!

    Posted by drjaicupid | December 7, 2011, 6:21 pm
  4. So True, there have been times when I have walked into a store and looked around for an hour unsure of what I was looking for and then walked back out. Usually when I’m greeted and someone helps me with my purchase I’m more likely to get something.

    Posted by musicallylegal | December 8, 2011, 2:00 pm
  5. This is also a good time for me to do some self reflection. I know that I am not good at greeting guests. As a matter of fact the hubby and I have been working on offering guests drinks when they come to the house…smh… we need to get it together. Thanks for the reminder!

    Posted by Mosley | December 9, 2011, 4:54 pm

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