Business Etiquette/Letterhead Arrangement


Ms. Oliver,

If a company has one corparate name with three separate divisions within that company, what would be the proper arrangement for the company letterhead?  Would the first line be the division name followed by "a division of company XXX" or should the company name be listed first followed by the appropriate division?

Dear Chris,

Thank you for writing with your superb question. From a clarity standpoint, I would cite the name of the division first, followed by a division of company XX. But there may be a way to deliver the information even more succinctly. For example, if the company name was "Able Shipping," and the division name was "Armstrong," you might have on your letterhead: "Armstrong, an Able Shipping company." It would also work to have "Armstrong, a division of Able Shipping." Whichever approach you choose, of course, would become the standard for letterhead at the other two divisions of the company. Thanks again so very much for your question.


Vicky Oliver  

Business Etiquette

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Vicky Oliver


I am an expert on traditional American business etiquette, including dining rules and regulations for the 21st century, making a good first impression (and how to fix a bad one), meeting etiquette, conversational tips, and dressing for success. I also have written about new media etiquette--how to use LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter to enhance your professional reputation. I am not an expert on wedding etiquette or international business etiquette.


I am the author of 301 Smart Answers to Tough Business Etiquette Questions (Skyhorse, 2010) and 301 Smart Answers to Tough Interview Questions (Sourcebooks, 2005). I have received over 301 media mentions on topics pertaining to business etiquette, job interviewing, and style on a budget.

Brown University Club in New York; Trinity Alumni & Alumnae Association

The Investment Professional Magazine; Crain's New York; The Charlotte Weekly;;; The Review Mom; Personal Finance

Brown University, B.A., English Honors; double major in Political Science

Awards and Honors
How-To Winner, Paris Book Festival; How-To Runner-Up, London Book Festival; Eric Hoffer Award First Runner-Up in Business;"Best Business: Career Book of 2010" in the National Best Books Awards.

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