People are social animals and in the business world, meetings are essential ways of discussing business deals or exchanging ideas or thoughts. But there are etiquette rules that you should adhere to in order to ensure the successful outcome of any meeting.

Personal Matters

It is very important to dress professionally when going to a meeting. Your clothes should not be shabby. They should be properly clean and neatly pressed - not ill-fitting. They should enhance your personality rather than suppress it.

If you are a man, you should also shave. If you have a beard, it should be trimmed and groomed appropriately. Hair should be clean and brushed. Appearances are very important, as people make assessments about you in the first few seconds of your meeting. Never be late for your meeting, especially the first one.

Etiquette implies not only your appearance, but also your style, mannerisms and conduct during the meeting. Your handshake should be firm, and you should maintain good eye contact when talking to people. You should also be polite. You should speak in a soft voice - never shout.

Even if things are not going your way in a meeting, be polite but firm in presenting your point.

Planning is Essential

If you have advance notice of the meeting, plan your points in advance so that you are clear on what you want to say. This will allow you to remain focused during the meeting so you can cover all of your topics. Be precise in your points while talking, and cite statistics to back up your ideas.

It is also important to know the other people present in the meeting. While interacting with them, make them feel important and appreciate their views. Be confident about yourself, and act confident.

When it comes to meeting etiquette, mind your manners. It may make all the difference between success and failure.