Or is it? The question I keep asking myself in Italy is, when is it appropriate to kiss one's colleagues?
Before we go any further - don't fear this is not one of those down at heel stories about snogging a colleague when tipsy at a post work drinks event. No (and quite honestly this doesn't happen there, due to the lack of contenders if you get my drift). No - the problem that has caused me much confusion in recent weeks is the kissing of one's colleagues (on each cheek naturally) as a greeting. When is the correct moment and when is it - well all a little bit too "over familiar"?
Being English - kissing, as a greeting just doesn't come naturally. I tend to get flustered and tend to opt for the wrong cheek resulting in faces meeting every so scarily close and just when I think I know the protocol - i.e. kissing is for outside the office/when looking jolly and fabulous at work events/with press/ NEVER CELEBRITIES (instant firing offence) - then someone goes and kisses me before 10am and I'm thrown.
Lately the kissing out of protocol has been happening much more often, and either I'm looking seriously hotter or I'm getting worse at this cultural exchange - sadly I'm assuming the latter given my exhausted/post-flu face right now. In a bid to help, my colleagues have carefully given me tips on when a kiss is near.
1. Big meetings - always. Helps pass the time and avoid awkward starts
2. Short meetings - always. Helps pass the time and avoid awkward starts
3.Backstage. Usually post-show - never before. Better not to risk lip-gloss stains with possible pic opportunities
4. V.I.P Room - NEVER. You will be shown the door by a security guard
5. Presentations - always. Before and after if you want to register the fact you've turned up and made it to the end
Confusing stuff...I'm sure you'll agree.
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More etiquette lessons at www.swide.com//Behind-The-Seams/Mr-G-gives-us-a-lesson-in-etiquette-