Etiquette Programs

Two of Margery's programs, "Defining Business Casual" and "Dining with Confidence" are available on video. Margery was featured in Fortune Magazine in March, 2002, and for a year wrote a regular, syndicated column that originated in the Milwaukee edition of The Business Journal, "Good Manners/Good Business."

Professional Appearance

Margery teaches not just current fashion, but also the reasons for the rules. The language of clothes is filled with hidden meanings and assumptions.

She decodes these messages and helps you present the image that is a true reflection of your best professional self.

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Originally from a small town in central Wisconsin, she attended the University of Wisconsin in Madison and then worked as a fashion and photographic model for ten years based in Tokyo, Paris, New York and Honolulu. She graduated from UW-Milwaukee in 1997 with a B.A. degree in Women's Studies.

Margery taught American Business Manners to Japanese executives while living in Tokyo. This included international standards of corporate etiquette and business attire: dressing for everything including annual board meetings and looking stylish (but not silly) on the golf course.

business worldwide

Margery Sinclair is based in Annapolis, Maryland. She presents business etiquette dinners and teaches professional appearance classes for colleges and corporations. She developed and taught the Business Etiquette curriculum at the former Milwaukee College of Business; she also taught World Geography there.

Having traveled to 118 countries, and circled the world three times, Margery teaches directly from her international experiences. Her major interests in these travels are the customs of different cultures--what is considered appropriate and why. The lessons learned from widely varying standards of expectations fuel her belief that one's cultural savvy and self-awareness dramatically influences one's effectiveness in business.

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If you have already learned the job skills,
now is a good time to master the social skills that will take you to the next level.
dining
with Confidence
The napkin; ordering from the 'middle of the menu'; decoding a formal place setting; demonstration of American and European eating styles; how to avoid eating someone else's roll or drinking someone else's water; when to start talking business and who does it; thanking the host verbally; the case for hand-written thank you notes versus email.
It Takes More Than Money
Presenting a Professional Appearance
Choosing business clothes: color, fabric, versatility, camouflage, accessories, comfort, quality, value, and appearance; posture and self-respect; the look of enthusiasm; the symbolism of dressing appropriately.
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Business Entertaining
for Clients and Co-workers
Earlier start and end times for evening parties; spouses and children; choosing the restaurant; timing of the invitation; changing or cancelling the date; confirming; being on time; complaining and criticizing; seating plans; the host-guest rules; making a memorable toast.
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The Business
of Meeting People
First impressions; introducing yourself and others; the identifying phrase; the personality of a handshake; the correct responses to "How do you do?" and "How are you?" (they are different); the "interested question" versus personal questions; gossip versus sharing information; compliments in business; EST questions; body language; asking for advice; how to work a room.
Corporate Etiquette Dinners
Substantial business is conducted at the dining table. When you are invited to a business meal, there's good news and bad news:
The good news is that you are getting a free lunch.
The bad news is that they are watching you eat.
Good table manners are considered short hand for knowing the other rules of etiquette. If a person's table manners are correct, he or she probably knows most of the other etiquette rules. This etiquette dinner is held at a restaurant of the client's choosing. An "E.Q." Test (etiquette quotient) is used to guide the discussion. It includes take-home materials, and the chance to avoid a blown deal.
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Every Ounce Counts
How to Travel Around the World
with One Piece of Carry-0n Luggage
How to have everything you need on a trip, but not everything you own; the difference between want and need; recommendations for a travel uniform; the Power Half; layering for different climates; accessories; the signs of an experienced traveler.
Are you ready to get your etiquette training now?

press

Here is what is being written about Margery Sinclair.
first impressions
March 2013 Margery Sinclair was one of three authors for the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentists new e-Guide. See pages 11-13 to learn how a great smile improves your first impressions on a date and a job interview.
Holiday Mistakes
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This is Margery's advice on how to avoid the three most common holiday mistakes, written by Michael Meidenbauer of ShorewoodNow.com on December 18, 2012.
Holiday Etiquette
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This is Margery's guide to holiday etiquette with onmilwaukee.com, published December 12, 2012.
Dinner Table Manners
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Here's an article on Margery's work with Shorewood's "Shop, Stop and Restore" on Saturday, December 8, 2012 (article with Jenny Heyden was posted December 6).
Good Manners
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This is Margery's appearance on Morning Blend with Tiffany Ogle and Molly Fay on WTMJ-TV, the NBC affiliate in Milwaukee. This interview originally aired July 15, 2010.
Travel the World with One Piece of Carry-on Luggage
Eating Attractively in 2015
Blend Extra: Speed Etiquette
Social etiquette has a place at dinner table
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This article appeared in The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on February 22, 2005.
Social etiquette has a place at dinner table

By KAREN HERZOG
kherzog@journalsentinel.com

Table manners aren't child's play. But children who don't learn to wait their turn for the potatoes or to chew with their mouth closed may face challenges later in life - especially in their careers.

"The No. 1 reason people lose a job is they don't play well with others," said Mary Spencer, director of placement at the Milwaukee School of Engineering.

Three times a year, the school offers etiquette and interpersonal skill workshops for engineering students who are preparing for job interviews. Lunch or dinner often is part of job interviews. The prospective employer is attuned to not only what the candidate says, but how he or she handles details of dinner - from selecting menu items to finessing conversation, Spencer said. That's because technical job skills aren't all that matter, especially if the job will involve entertaining clients over dinner.

“Table manners are considered shorthand for other aspects of etiquette," said Margery Sinclair of Glendale, who teaches etiquette classes for both children and business clients. "If table manners are fine, the rest of their social skills are considered good as well. Etiquette refers to all of the rules governing behavior. Manners refers to one's personal behavior." If children develop good manners, they grow up with respect and consideration for others, Sinclair said, and tend to have more friends. "Children who grow up with a knowledge of etiquette have a lifelong advantage." Sinclair has a favorite quote from "Miss Manners" Judith Martin: "Sloppy eating habits have probably ruined more relationships than evil hearts." Stressing table manners from childhood through adulthood sounds a bit old-fashioned, but it's part of the lifelong pursuit of happiness, according to both those who teach etiquette and the professionals who validate its importance. Spencer said MSOE started offering its workshops on etiquette after getting feedback from business owners and students about skills that needed honing, such as "what to wear to an interview and how to handle dinner."

"Students ate pizza and hamburgers for four years and all of the sudden, they were confronted with multiple forks and questions such as, 'Who orders, can I order a drink, do you crush the crackers for soup, which fork do I use first, and can I eat the flower on my plate?' " Spencer said.

Initially, MSOE had to do "a lot of selling" to get students who prided themselves on technical job skills to attend etiquette workshops, Spencer said. But turnout has been strong at the workshops taught by outside professionals. Donna Panko, owner of Professional Skill Builders consulting in Chicago, has taught some of the MSOE workshops, which cover general business etiquette and image building.

"Students ate pizza and hamburgers for four years and all of the sudden, they were confronted with multiple forks and questions such as, 'Who orders, can I order a drink, do you crush the crackers for soup, which fork do I use first, and can I eat the flower on my plate?' " Spencer said.

Initially, MSOE had to do "a lot of selling" to get students who prided themselves on technical job skills to attend etiquette workshops, Spencer said. But turnout has been strong at the workshops taught by outside professionals. Donna Panko, owner of Professional Skill Builders consulting in Chicago, has taught some of the MSOE workshops, which cover general business etiquette and image building.

The Lost Art of Writing 'Thank You' Notes
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This article appeared in The Business Journal on December 5, 2003.
Writing thank you notes is a skill that should have been mastered by high school graduation. But it's never too late to review.
Q. How soon after receiving the favor, gift, or hospitality should you send the thank you note?
A. Be prompt, and send it in less than one week. The same day is perfect; the next day is fine. Three or four days later is acceptable; five is OK. Six days? You're pushing it. Seven days is the maximum. You don't want to start with the excuse, "Sorry I haven't written sooner, but..."
Q. What is the best way to start writing a thank you note?
A. Start with the word "you"--as in, "You were so kind to...". That's an improvement over the grade-school formula of, "Thank you for the..."
Q. Does it have to be handwritten?
A. Yes. That shows that you actually wrote it yourself. If you think your handwriting is unacceptable, write more slowly. Use a pen, not a pencil. Keep a dictionary handy for correct spelling. Writing thank you notes is easier if you already have appropriate note careds available. They don't have to say "Thank you" on the front. In fact, it's better if they don't because then the same cards can be used for notes of congratulations and condolences.
Q. How long should a thank you note be?
A. It only has to be three to five sentences. You can write more if you want, but then it becomes a thank you letter. Three sentences are sufficient. The best notes are short, sincere, and specific.
Q. By now, almost everyone knows to send a thank you note after a job interview, but how many people actually do it?
A. It only has to be three to five sentences. You can write more if you want, but then it becomes a thank you letter. Three sentences are sufficient. The best notes are short, sincere, and specific.
Q. How long should a thank you note be?
A. It only has to be three to five sentences. You can write more if you want, but then it becomes a thank you letter. Three sentences are sufficient. The best notes are short, sincere, and specific.

client responses

Read what clients are saying about Margery's programs.

A Year of Good Manners

A new book by Margery Sinclair to record the birthdays and anniversaries of your family and friends in a perpetual calendar, and to help you remember good manners all year long. There are 365 common-sense courtesy tips, and six floral paintings from the "respect series" of the Great American Flower Collection by Jan Polk.
Unique Features
  • Easy to use--the left side of each page has an etiquette tip for the day. The right side has space for you to write the names of people whose milestones you want to remember
  • 365 common-sense courtesy tips; six floral paintings
  • Excellent gift idea for birthdays, graduations, and weddings
  • Hard-cover to last for generations
  • An heirloom that becomes more valuable with every entry
  • 180 pages
topics covered
The practical courtesy tips range:
  • from weddings to family dinners
  • from naming your children to chewing gum
  • from travel to R.S.V.P.
  • from thank you notes to road rage
  • from too much perfume to the European style of dining

“When I was a little girl, my grandmother showed me her Birthday Book. On the left side of each page, there were quotations from the poetry of Alfred Lord Tennyson, one for each day of the year. On the right side, she wrote the birthdays of her parents and grandparents, and of my brother and me. My father boldly wrote his own name on January 11, adding 'age 9.'

”I have since entered the birthday of my son, and he will add the special days of his children, the fifth generation.

“It is now a family heirloom, especially meaningful and personal to have this information in the hand-writing of people who are no longer with us. If there's ever a fire, I'm grabbing this on my way out the door!”

Margery Sinclair,

Business Etiquette Consultant
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price
$27.95
*shipping and handling included.
To order, and for volume discount, call 414.861.1965.
Also for sale at
George Watts Tea Shop,
761 N. Jefferson Street, Milwaukee WI 53202
Consider having your parents and grandparents write in the birthdays of your extended family. Their handwriting creates a deeper family connection and memory for generations to come.