Advice for Students

The Importance of Civility in Life and the Workplace

April 18, 2018  |     |   0 Comment

Civility is cultivated by using basic manners and treating others with consideration, respect, understanding and honesty.  In her book, “Rude Awakenings: Overcoming the Civility Crisis in the Workplace,” Dr. Giovinella Gonthier defines civility as “being mindful of the dignity of the human being in your sphere at all times.  Civility is not so much about nice-ties as it is about the way we live our lives overall and the way we treat other people.” 

At the heart of civility lies what we all know as the “Golden Rule” –  do unto others as you would have them do unto you.  This is the key principle of civility which should guide our behaviour towards others, both in life and the workplace.

Civility is important to demonstrate in all aspects of our life if we are to live and work in harmony with grace, kindness and dignity with those around us because it impacts who we are and our relationship with others.  It does so in the following seven ways:

1.  Civility Fosters Respect:  every human being wants to be treated with respect by others.  Showing courtesy to others is the simplest form of respect.

2. Civility Impacts Leadership: civility is important for the leadership roles we hold in our lives whether at home, at work or within our community.  When we show up as our best selves, we positively impact and lead others around us to do the same.

3. Civility Enhances Your Professional Image:  civility is a defining attribute of the image or brand of an individual and your organization.  How you present yourself with respect to your appearance, your behaviour, and how you communicate has an impact upon how others perceive you and your organization.

4.  Civility Influences Success:  civility also has everything to do with creating homes, workplaces and communities in which people can be there best selves, do their best work, positively impact others and thrive. See point #2 – success and leadership go hand-in-hand.

5.  Civility Enhances Communication:  civility promotes positive communication, productive dialogue, and peaceful co-existence with others.

6.  Civility Encourages Collaboration and Teamwork:  civility helps to create successful collaboration in the workplace. Civility gives us the means to disagree without being disagreeable.

7.  Civility Impacts Customer Perception:  Civility in the workplace extends positively to how customers are treated and their perception of your business.  Those who work in an atmosphere where good manners are the norm will, for the most part, respond to their customers and others in kind.  Customers will be more willing to continue to do business with you or refer others to your organization if they feel they are being treated with respect.

Choose to cultivate civility by using basic manners and treating others with consideration, respect, understanding and honesty.  By doing so, and living by the “Golden Rule,” you will be able to positively impact others, build positive relationships and achieve personal and professional success.

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