Tag Archives: Scarlet Communications

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ASK SCARLET

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BURNING QUESTION? NEED ADVICE ON HOW TO HANDLE A SITUATION?

ASK SCARLET is now live on the Scarlet Says Blog. 

Ready? Set! ASK SCARLET!


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Scarlet’s Top 5 Moments of 2013

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2013-2014Just as quickly as it arrived, it has come to an end. 2013 has been a year of ups, downs, twists, turns and hurdles for all of us. Many events have been tragedies that have brought people, families, schools and even entire countries closer together. Some events have been comical and others were just down right surprising.   Every event that made Scarlet’s Top 5 List isn’t necessarily the most noble, award-winning or monumental event, but it certainly was newsworthy and had a huge etiquette and protocol lesson, specifically in the area of perspective. Let’s get started and be sure to vote for your own top 3 moments at the bottom of this post.

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Affordable Care ActAffordable Care Act – The Affordable Care Act, aka Obama Care,  has been the talk of the town for pretty much the whole year. From the launch of it, to its rocky roll out, to present day, where citizens are constantly reminded of the deadline to sign up, it has certainly been a huge media topic of discussion. Considering its reputation, you wouldn’t believe that this piece of legislature was actually signed into law on March 23, 2010.  Whether you’re for, against or still on the fence about it, the law is pretty much here to stay in some shape, way or form and there are many citizens who will  benefit from its it enactment. Perhaps your current status in life prohibits you from needing to take advantage of the benefits of the Affordable Care Act,  but does your perspective keep you from considering if others will benefit? Contrarily,  are you considering that others have been priced out of their existing insurance (either can’t afford personal plans or their companies are dropping because they can’t afford it) and are forced to change.  Both perspectives are valid  and  are issues that people are facing today. We’ll all have our opinions and it is expected that we make decisions based on whats best for our own personal well being, but as we discuss subjects and debate issues, we should keep in mind that our own perspectives are not the only ones to consider. Click HERE to read more about the law.

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Mary BarraGM Appoints First Woman CEO – Mary Teresa Barra was named to succeed Dan Akerson as Chief Executive Officer of General Motors, making her the first female CEO of a major global automaker. Barra is scheduled to take office as CEO in January 2014. While the chatter of the social media-sphere was mostly in pleasant congratulations of this appointment, there was also a small buzz of talk about why a woman being appointed to this role was such a big deal. So perhaps you aren’t a feminist, have no women that are close to you and quite frankly don’t care about gender equality. Consider that there are 72 million women in the workforce in America, many of which who do care significantly about this appointment because this is a reflection and pathway to what their successes could be.  Our individual perspectives and positions in life sometimes limit us, and the inability to consider the perspectives of others can potentially limit us even more. For more about women and workplace statistics, click HERE.

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Government ShutdownGovernment Shutdown – From October 1 through 16, 2013, the United States federal government entered a shutdown and halted most routine operations after Congress failed to enact legislation appropriating funds for fiscal year 2014. Some very vital services that are unknowingly government driven were suddenly halted for more than 2 weeks. Most times when we think about the “government”, we picture a few massive buildings, some politicians, maybe some judges and usually the White House. What we don’t picture are the people – the 109,000 people who were furloughed and financially affected by this shutdown. While you may not have been directly affected by the shutdown, chances are your neighbor, your Facebook friend, your mail delivery person or your child’s teacher very well may have been. Did you keep them in your mind and consider their perspectives while you discussed, complained or even disregarded the issue?

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Nelson MandelaNelson Mandela Dies – Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela was a South African anti-apartheid revolutionary, politician, and philanthropist who served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999. Nelson Mandela was born in Transkei, South Africa, on July 18, 1918. He joined the African National congress in 1944 and was engaged in resistance against the ruling National Party’s apartheid policies for many years before being arrested in August 1962. Mandela was incarcerated for over twenty-seven years, during which his reputation as a potent symbol of resistance to the anti-apartheid movement grew steadily. He held an impassioned stance on the rights of everyone to live in freedom.  Released from prison in 1990, Mandela won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993 and was inaugurated as the first democratically elected president of South Africa in 1994. Mandela’s selfless, diligent and forgiving nature is what has identified him as such a global icon. At a time when we are tasked with doing more with less, producing results quicker  and  ensuring that we are our own personal cheerleader and advocate, it is refreshing to reflect on and honor an individual who embraced the broader perspective of doing what was in the best interest of not just himself, but for so many others.  Read more about Nelson Mandela HERE.

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Lenox Hotels.1Boston Marathon Bombing – During the Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013, two pressure cooker bombs exploded, killing 3 people and injuring an estimated 264 others. The bombs exploded about 13 seconds apart, near the finish line on Boylston Street in Boston. This tragedy was disheartening in so many ways. The story resonated and is touching to so many people, especially those who are runners or have friends  or family members who are avid runners. As tragic as this attack was, there were some people who took advantage of the opportunity to do just the opposite – to be giving, kind and to think of others before themselves. One prime example of great hospitality was that of the food and beverage industry,  After the bombs exploded, Lenox Hotel on Boylston Street became the hotel command central for hungry law enforcement investigators. What started out as lunch for 80 on the Tuesday afternoon following the bombing, became dinner for more than 400 on Tuesday night, and grew into about 1,500 meals a day. The show of kindness, generosity and community at the Lenox over that week provided a stark contrast to the hate and terror of the Marathon bombings. About 70 Lenox managers and employees volunteered their time at the hotel, cleaning rooms and preparing pizza, burgers, steak, and whatever else they had on hand. Unfortunately, unexpected bad things happen and will continue to happen in our lives. Luckily, to combat them, smiles, hugs, kind words and the giving of your time to help another person in need still costs absolutely nothing. Read more about the Boston Marathon bombing and the Lenox Hotel HERE.

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Miley CyrusBONUS – Miley Cyrus Twerks  Ok, so don’t side eye this selection yet.  First, let’s just get the facts out of the way.  Miley Ray Cyrus is an American actress and recording artist. The daughter of country singer Billy Ray Cyrus, she held minor roles in the television series Doc and the film Big Fish in her childhood.  Her most popular and well-known role was that of Hannah Montana, which focused on Miley Stewart (portrayed by Miley Cyrus), a teenager living a double life as an average schoolgirl by day and a famous recording artist Hannah Montana by night. Miley has had a much more colorful and successful career than the one MTV stunt (and succeeding acts of surprise) than many of us would be forced to believe. With over 81 awards under her belt, 187 nominations and a net worth of over $150 million, many would certainly go out on a limb here and say that she is successful. The ongoing  focus is not the aforementioned list of accomplishments. It is instead that one performance on Sunday, August 25, 2013 on MTV.  It was risky, sexy, over the top and definitely full of protocol breaches (of course according to the Scarlet scale).  But, when we’re talking about the world of entertainment and MTV, there are always risks involved. The general public can sometimes forget that entertainers are usually in business to do one thing, entertain. This often results in what many describe as raunchy, bad role modeling and irresponsible behavior. However, it almost always results in something else – something that most entertainers are always after and is in fact what they end up achieving – high ratings and increased album sales. Like so many others, we don’t want bad role modeling displays for our future leaders, but  from an entertainers perspective, if the result of what we deem bad role modeling ends up being higher sales, why would they stop?

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Other Notable Moments In 2013:

  • Washington Navy Yard Shooting
  • Lance Armstrong Admits Doping
  • Beyonce’s Secret Album Release

Vote for your very own top moments of 2013 here: [polldaddy poll=7678226]


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1% to Empty – Are You On Cell Phone Life Support?

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ImageWhen your cell phone gets low on battery life, you likely go into recovery mode, trying to locate an outlet and get back to a safe amount of power – which is usually somewhere above 20%. As the need to be continuously connected grows, we’ve noticed an interesting phenomenon – customers asking restaurant servers and bartenders to aid in providing power to their cell phone as they sit at the bar or eat a meal.

Now, let’s be honest, even we’ve engaged in such an ask, but like everything else, there is protocol for this…

Scarlet Says…If you need to ask your server or bartender to help you by plugging your cell phone into an outlet, limit the amount of times that you ask them to “check” or return your phone to you for you to check. Just let the phone be undisturbed for a substantial amount of time, allowing you to get enough charge to then charge it on your own later. Remember to silence your phone while it is in their possession. No one wants to hear unrelenting buzzing or some inappropriate ring tone over and over again. Additionally, don’t forget this small, (yet, clearly important) deed, when the bill comes. Could you tip a little more to show your appreciation for asking for this additional assistance?

Happy Dining and Charging!

Until Next Time,

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Top 10 Etiquette Tips for Young Professionals

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  1. First impressions count: We all have our bad days, but limiting how they affect your attitude and appearance is best. You are often remembered for the rest of your life by your initial presentation. Look your best, offer a free smile and present the best possible version of you, every time.
  2. Tact always wins: We all get a little frustrated and perhaps even worked up sometimes, but tact ALWAYS wins. Take a breathe. Walk away. Spend a moment alone. Do whatever it takes to always remain graceful and exude tact.
  3. Respect your social network: Employers, associates, friends, colleges, colleagues and pretty much everyone else checks your social networking pages and they likely have searched for you in search engines like, Google, Bing and Yahoo. Is your online presence acceptable?
  4. Be grateful: Did you get a gift lately or did someone do something nice for you? Thank them by first verbally saying thank you, then by sending them a hand written thank you note. (Emailed thank you notes are ok, but hand-written notes and cards are magic.)
  5. Mind your body language: There is so much than can be said without saying a word. Your posture, your eye contact, folded arms or excessive leaning can communicate vibes that you are not truly trying to communicate.  Be mindful of what you are saying…without saying anything.
  6. Names…Repeat, Repeat, Repeat: If you are a human, you likely are amongst your other fellow humans in struggling to remember names. While mastering the art of names takes a while, the best way to begin the journey is to repeat their names as much as possible throughout a conversation. Everyone wants to feel special and the most simple way to make someone feel special is to know, utilize and respect their name.
  7. To eat or not to eat: Interviews and meetings occur in so many different formats and venues. At some point, you will have to conduct an interview or a meeting over a meal. Generally speaking, interviews and meetings over meals are not designed for you to have the meal of your life. They are a convenience factor because you have to eat and so does your meeting counterpart. They also offer an opportunity for your counterpart to see how you conduct yourself outside of an office environment. Three quick tips for dining over meals are: don’t order the most expensive thing on the menu, prepare to pay your part of the meal or the entire meal if you called the meeting and limit your alcohol intake.
  8. Some things are a given now: As a young professional, there are now things that should go without saying. A few things include: always turn off your cell phone or silence it in professional or business settings,  learn how to shake hands the right way; no bone crushers or wet rag shakes and respect others time by always being on time, but preferably arriving early.
  9. Sneak texts: It’s incredibly obvious when you are disengaged in a situation and more engaged in texting instead. Save your reputation, respect the presence of others and spend a little more time with humans versus your electronic communication pal (your phone).
  10. Dress the part. If you are invited somewhere and a dress code is indicated, respect it and adhere to it. If you are unsure of the dress code, always dress up versus dressing down.

Until Next Time,

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How Can I Help You(rself)

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Me. Me. Me. We live in quite the self-centered, selfish time.

How often is it that someone genuinely asks you, how can I help? Dara Munson, CEO, of Big Brothers Big Sister of Metropolitan Detroit and a personal inspiration deeply understands this selfless approach.

At the end of a meeting with her, she always asks, “how can I help”? Imagine a world where we practiced the ultimate act of etiquette and thought and acted in a way that benefited others. The interesting thing about doing for others, being selfless and/or volunteering is that you end up learning a great deal about yourself, connecting with new people and benefitting as well.

Scarlet Says… Do unto others, selflessly… and watch the favor be returned…

Until Next Time,

Scarlet


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What? This Old Thing…

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Them: “You look really nice today. That is a beautiful shirt.”

You: “What, this old piece of crap?”

It is ok, normal and acceptable to simply accept a compliment, instead of downplaying it. The simplest way to accept a compliment is to say thank you AND, if the situation warrants it, return a compliment to them.

Scarlet Says, continually downplaying compliments will ultimately lead to a decline in them..and who wants to live a life with no compliments? We surely don’t…

 

Until Next Time,


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Consider Your Thank You Strategy

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Thanksgiving is only 5 days away. Who will you thank? What are you thankful for?

Yes, the food is a good reason to be thankful and positively anxious…but is it really the most important thing?

As you begin to finalize your holiday plans, rest assured that the food will be there, and so will the dessert…and hopefully NOT the fruit cake. But, what may or may not be there is genuine thanks and appreciation, simply for the opportunity to be in the presence of people that you know, love and appreciate.

Scarlet Says….Take a moment and consider your thank you strategy. Who will you thank? What are you thankful for?

Until Next Time,

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Your Name Is Your Name

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1scar·let

noun ˈskär-lət

1: scarlet cloth or clothes
2: any of various bright reds
3: etiquette and employee engagement

Is your name difficult to pronounce or is it assumed that your name is pronounced one way when in fact it is pronounced another way? Do you feel guilty about correcting people on the pronunciation of your name? DON’T!

Your name is your name and you have the right to request for it to be spelled and said correctly. This also applies to name abbreviations or shortenings. If your name is Robert and you don’t prefer Bob, Scarlet Says, it is perfectly fine to say, “I know that most people don’t mind Robert being shortened to Bob, but I really do think Robert sounds better and I prefer it.”

Remember, your name is the gateway to your identification and if that is said and spelled wrong, imagine what else will be allowed…

Until Next Time…

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Tardy For The Party

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So, it happens to the best of us. We run a couple of minutes behind and sometimes in situations that are really critical.

Imagine running late for a wedding ceremony. What do you do? Skip the wedding all together and just go to the reception? Lurk around the lobby and wait for the let out?

Actually this is one of those situations where you have to evaluate the whole situation to see what is the best decision.

If you really want to witness the ceremony, in most cases, you SHOULD wait until the ENTIRE bridal party has went down the aisle, including the bride. You can then quietly sneak into one of the side doors. Under no circumstances should you come down the middle aisle and cross the “sacred” wedding runner (if they have one).

Now your tardiness may mean that you have to sit on the most easily accessible side. Now is not the time to ask, “which side is the brides side”….just get in and quietly and quickly sit down.

If the venue had a balcony, hosts will likely direct you to sit there and you should happily comply and not try to strong-arm your way into the lower floor.

We all run late for stuff…it happens, but don’t interrupt an important day for your friends/family by not making the best decision on how to handle your tardiness.

…until next time…


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LEGACY

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Most of us probably don’t have the time or the patience to sit around and perfectly craft out each and every step of our future. Even if you did do that, we all know that wrenches and unexpected hurdles will arise anyway.

This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t at least know the direction that you want to head in and what your next most logical career and personal steps should be.  

Think about it quickly. When is the last time that you just sat down and purposely put together a plan for your next personal or career move? One of the pleasures of being a human is the joy of being able to create your own future and mold your own legacy.

How would you like to be remembered? What are you doing now and daily to ensure that you will be remembered the way that YOU CHOOSE to be?

By they way, August is National Legacy Month…so now is a good time to start considering, “What Will My Legacy Be”?

…until next time…

 

 


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