Dear –ers: Don’t txt –ees; talk 2 thm. Nicely. Kthxbai.

If you know what that line means, you’ve already made my point. Not a lot going on in the news today (apparently, some English guy just got married), so as I was going through my inbox searching for a topic to post about, I came across an invite to an upcoming audio conference.

The title of the session, presented by the Workplace Training Center, is “Business Communication Etiquette Part 1: How to Deal with Technology.”  

I was twice stunned. Once, by the notion that people might actually need a seminar on how to apply the golden rule with technology in the workplace. And twice, that even if such a seminar is needed, that it needs to be conducted in multiple parts.

Here’s what I’d say if I were leading this session: Be polite. Treat people — including your coworkers and customers/clients — like you’d want to be treated, even when using email, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, carrier pigeon, what have you. Don’t text in a professional situation. Ever. Texting is for reminding your spouse to pick up milk, not for communicating business messages. Got it? Class dismissed.

Apparently though, this is not the tack that the session’s leader, business coach Natalie R. Manor, CEO of Natalie Manor & Associates, will be taking. According to the description, the seminar will address “what happens when we don’t use [technology] with any common sense or etiquette. What good are your smartphone, laptop, LinkedIn page or any of the other tools at your disposal if you can’t manage them with a sense of control and with courtesy, respect and graciousness?”

It seems there’s even a buzzterm for the corporate golden rule — “business communication etiquette” — and that “adding BCE to your communication is like adding espresso to your day! Sure, you can get by without it, but you’ll accomplish more and add more power to your communication if you use it,” the session description reads.

So, there’s power in politeness. Seems your mother was right yet again: Manners matter.

What do you think? Is a seminar on email etiquette necessary? Have you or a coworker committed a technology faux pas that may have been avoided if you’d participated in a seminar like this? Or, does such a session seem unnecessary when the golden rule suffices? Share your thoughts in the comments. 

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