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Making Introductions

     Learning how to introduce people to each other is a very important part of social etiquette. It is always polite to make people feel welcome and to help them get acquainted with those whom they have not yet had the privilege of meeting.
Be friendly and take the initiative to make introductions—they will thank you later.

Conversation Points

     It is customary to find a connecting point or something in common for the two people that you introduce to one another. You can do this by saying something about each one that the other person may find of interest. This will give them a starting point for conversation.

     Before you know it, they will find other things of common interest that they can discuss. Once their conversation is well underway, you can leave them and greet others.

Introduction Rules

The following are a few tips that will help you be confident and comfortable with making introductions:

 1) Say the name of that person first to whom you wish to give the greater courtesy.
For example:

  • Say the woman’s name before the man’s.
  • Introduce a man to a woman.
  • Introduce a younger person to an older person to whom you want to give the greater honor.
  • For those in the military, introduce a lower rank individual to a higher rank individual.

2) Generally, stand when introducing or being introduced. However, traditionally, women are allowed to remain seated.

3) Generally include last names with the introductions. This offers another potential point of contact or reference and shows greater courtesy.

4) Include any official titles when appropriate, like Doctor, Mister, Judge, Coach, Admiral, Professor, or Reverend, etc. This will establish a certain identifiable connection as well as a level of honor and respect.

How to Handle and Avoid Social Mistakes

1) If you have forgotten a person’s name, don’t stand there struggling, simply say, “I’m terribly sorry, but I’ve forgotten your name.” They will appreciate your honesty. Never pretend to remember, because it only delays finding out their name, and becomes even more uncomfortable the next time.

2) To help you remember names, mentally associate something with their name to help you remember, for instance: “Vicky has a V-neck,” or “Becky has brown eyes and a bubbly personality,” or “Melinda, that’s my sister’s name.”

Repeat their names three times if possible within the course of the initial conversation. Think about them later and call their names to your remembrance. This will help to solidify the information in your memory bank, so that you can show the nicest of manners the next time.

Practice Makes Perfect

     Remember, making introductions will lead to future friendships. You will not want to rob others of the pleasure of knowing those who you know.

     Everyone enjoys being around a friendly person who will help them meet other friendly people.

     Start now and practice on someone before a proper introduction becomes necessary—when the time comes you’ll be ready and prepared!

Copyright © 2008-2015 Debbie Reynolds Harper

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