Business Etiquette/Protocol and Intros


I am participating in an event later this week. Proclamations will be presented to organizations. One is being presented by the Mayors office and another by the county supervisors office?  Who should be introduced fist.  based on my understanding it should be the mayor's office and then the county supervisors office.  Also, is there a specific protocol or are there specific guidelines for introducing the presenters so that they both feel important? Lastly, is there a specific person or persons who should accept these on their companies behalf, Chairman of the Board, president/CEO, COO, etc

Dear Ann:

Thank you for your question.  The rule of protocol is that the person with the higher position in the order of precedence goes first. You are correct with the Mayor being introduced first.  Another protocol rule is the the person accepting a gift should be at the same level (position) as the giver - or the closest to it that you have in the entourage.  

When introducing presenters to make them feel special, give the audience some positive information about the person they are representing.  Remember that the representative is acting as if they are the person they are representing.  Make sure they are introduced to all the dignitaries in the room as well.

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Cynthia W. Lett


Author of "That's So Annoying - An Etiquette Expert On The World's Most Irritating Habits And What To Do About Them" . One of the few Certified Etiquette Professionals (CEP) and Certified Protocol Professionals(CPP) earned by examination through the International Society of Protocol & Etiquette Professionals ( I will be happy to answer your questions about business or social etiquette, international customs or protocol issues.


Ms. Lett has trained over 100 etiquette professionals worldwide to teach the subject to professionals and children. She has worked in 102 countries and is expert in doing business in unfamiliar cultures. Ms. Lett is principal of The Lett Group since 1983. Professionally, Ms. Lett is the founder of and serves as Executive Director of the International Society of Protocol & Etiquette Professionals headquartered in Washington, DC.

University Club of Washington, DC She is an active member of the National Speakers Association, American Society for Training and Development; Women Business Owners; Professional Convention Management Association; and past member of the American Society of Association Executives; Foundation for International Meetings (Board of Governors 1986-1987). She was elected into Who's Who of American Women; Who's Who of Advertising Executives; 2000 Notable American Women; Who's Who of the World's Women; Who's Who of U.S. Executives and Who's Who of the World.

Ms.Lett is the author of "That's So Annoying: An Etiquette Expert On The World's Most Irritating Habits And What To Do About Them" available wherever books are sold and at She has been featured and quoted in publications such as Successful Meetings, Meetings and Conventions, Meeting News, Business Travel News, Washington Business Journal, Washington Post, New York Times, Regardies Magazine, Wall Street Journal, The Robb Report, Entrepreneur Magazine, The Harvard Business Review, Ohio Business Review, Training and Development Journal, CIO Magazine and others

Certified Protocol Professional Certified Etiquette Professional Certificate: Adult Learning Techniques - George Washington University Master-Legal Studies - Antioch School of Law BS - Restaurant, Hotel & Institutional Management - Purdue University BA - Public Relations / Interpersonal Communications - Purdue University

Awards and Honors
Distinguished Darden Professor - Purdue University

Past/Present Clients
During 1990, Ms. Lett planned a series of Business Exchange meetings in the Soviet Union for entrepreneurs from the United States who wished to learn about joint ventures with the Soviets in many different fields. She is featured in the PBS special Pioneer Living as the protocol expert. Ms. Lett is also the etiquette expert for the Fine Living Channel and currently featured in Survival Guide Office Etiquette. She is also a frequent expert on etiquette issues for Fox Cable News.

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