Being a Guest
Let's talk about the reciprocal responsibilities for the good guest. Well, the first begins in terms of the response to that invitation. The RSVP, respondez s'il vous plait, the request of your reply is appreciated. The continuing importance of the RSVP cannot be overstated. The most difficult thing for any host to manage on a guest list is a question mark. If you can't go, say so, reply, say no. I know, hearts will break all over the world, people will survive your no. They will be appreciative and glad if you reply yes. The most difficult thing is when nobody replies. I know people who've stopped throwing dinner parties because they just can't get enough people to reply to know how to plan. Reply in a timely fashion. It doesn't do any good if someone invites you to a dinner party next week if you wait til the day before to tell them yes or no. They just don't know. Reply to any invitation. Reply in the medium that the invitation arrives in. If it's a verbal invite, reply verbally. If...
it's a telephone call, return the call. If it's an email, just return the email. If it's a wedding invitation with a reply card, by all means, use the reply card and send it back. More formally, if it's a wedding invitation that doesn't include a reply card, that means you get to write out the reply on your own stationery and send that back. The continuing importance of the RSVP cannot be overstated. If you wanna participate well, if you wanna continue to be invited, if you wanna keep social function happening, get back to people, get back to them as quickly as you can. Put yourself in that host's shoes, think about what you would need to know and then go ahead and do it. Be on time. Honor time contracts, honor your commitments. Once you said you're gonna be there, show up. And don't be late. That grand entrance is best executed in a timely fashion and manner. Five minutes early, okay. Ten minutes early, kind of alright. You don't wanna be any earlier than that. Too early is too early. Be on time. Be a willing participant. The image consultant we used to work with at the Emily Post Institute said it's not enough to drag your carcass there. You've gotta bring your attention, your willingness and ability to participate as well. Offer to help when you can. This is the host guest dance. If the host has that little checklist running in their mind all the time, greet, introduce, check in. The guest is always looking for opportunities to participate. Is there anything I can help with? Is there something I can do? I noticed the music stopped playing, should I go hit repeat? That's quite alright, I've got a playlist set up, I'm gonna go do it myself. That would be so helpful, could you get something out of the jazz stack and get it on? I know, people don't use CD's anymore. Offer to help when you can. This is the host guest dance. This is that partnership that's so important to engage in. Yeah, grab that platter, follow me to the kitchen. Thank you so much. I've gotta get dessert out in just a minute. Don't over-indulge, rather it's the mozzarella sticks or the Champagne. We're gonna come back to this when we talk about our top ten business social tips. Don't take advantage of your host's generosity. You don't wanna give the appearance of over doing it. You got a certain amount of latitude as a guest. Your host is gonna be making an effort to put themselves out for you. You don't wanna take advantage of this generosity. You don't even want to give the appearance of taking advantage of this generosity. Be a little bit abstemious, be careful with how you proceed. And finally, you also get to thank your host for having you. This is the exchange of gratuity. The importance of gratitude, the importance of the way we show thanks can't be overstated. In the host guest relationship, in the host guest dance it's particularly important. I spend a lot of time on host roles and guest roles because these are fundamentally important roles to understand. If you make an effort on behalf of your guest, if you make and effort on behalf of your host, if you make an effort to lead as the host, if you make an effort to follow well as a guest, you're gonna be great shape in a lot of different business social situation and circumstances. Identify your role, it's gonna help you play that role well. If you can't tell yourself whether you're a host or a guest in a given situation, stop and think, who did the inviting, who did the replying. Who's hosting, whose venue are you in?