Business Etiquette and Body Language Blunders

When we meet with someone in person, most of our senses are involved and when we are aware of another’s body language we can pick up on micro-expressions of the face and make eye contact which can provide us with a huge amount of useful information. However, the downside of of meeting anyone for the the first time especially, is that we automatically make judgements.


We all automatically judge and it’s one of the automatisms we contend with daily; we judge others, situations/events and ourselves. By judging we often create an immediate conflict or struggle. – Judgement from ‘Your Mindful Journey’


Even though it can aid our own emotional stability when we are mindful of our automatic response to judge others, by being aware of using our body language skills to help us with business etiquette can provide us with great insight. On the other hand when conducting business with others, like when attending for interview or in a business meeting, are we consciously aware of our own body language blunders?

About the author

Bob Brotchie is a counsellor, mindset consultant and creator of "Conscious Living by Design"™. He writes for Anglia Counselling, is featured on various other websites and introduces us to many guest writers all covering topics related to mental health and wellbeing.

Bob provides bespoke counselling services to individuals and couples in the privacy and comfort of a truly welcoming environment at his Anglia Counselling company office, located near Newmarket in Suffolk, England. Bob also provides professional online counselling, for local, national, and international clients. The therapeutic models offered are bespoke to the client’s needs, especially those in receipt of 'childhood emotional neglect' (CEN), whilst integrating a mindful approach to psychotherapy and cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) principles. For clients experiencing trauma and/or phobia, Bob offers EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing).


  1. It seems that you missed one; touch. I was shown this, by coincidence this morning:

    It seems to me that two folk are in the wrong here, the one speaking first invades the other ones space [number 13] dramatically, and the one whose space is invaded reacts… oddly. A simple request would have done. It is assuredly ‘getting too close’, and appears to be an attempt to dominate, using touch.

    The video shows an extreme body language blunder that provokes a very strange reaction.

    Or was it a blunder? Might it have been a tactic that failed?

    By the way, that space of one and a half feet differs from culture to culture. Some cultures have a larger and others a smaller distance. Imagine “A” whose culture is for a foot, and “B” whose culture of for two feet. B will step ways. A can drive B around the room by following at A’s cultural distance because B needs to be her cultural distance away, and all without understanding what is taking place, and all in a deep and polite, even happy, conversation.

    Does the personal space ‘requirement’ differ when one of the people is male and the other female?

    • Robert Brotchie

      Very good observations, as ever, Tim – thank you.
      I think with different genders the ‘power’ games can be even more obvious in my experience.

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