Thursday, April 15, 2010


When we GREET some one, we are in fact Giving Recognizable Enthusiastic Energetic Tribute. Hello is the most common for of greeting and it is usually followed by energetic shake hand and a enthusiastic Good Morning or similar such sentiments. Occasionally we also punctuate our initial greeting with How do you do? All these words when expressed with feeling and meaning, form bridges in our daily social interaction and pave the way for a healthy and respectful relationship.

Greetings are a key ingredient in the upbringing of an individual. It is also the essential prelude to any form of etiquettes and manners. The essence of greeting a person lies in the ‘ice breaker ‘quality that it has. It sets the tone for further communication; gives the parties involved the break through needed to interact and ignites the environment with positive emotions and feelings. The form and style of greeting would vary from region to region, culture to culture and would be richly spiced with the local customs and practices. In rural India ‘Namaste’ with palms joined would be the general yardstick, the urban yuppie would not be shy of air kissing and hugging as form of greeting.

Man being on the upper echelons of the animal kingdom has the distinct advantage of being able to interpret and analyze communication of the higher order. The style and display of greeting would therefore play a vital role in forming impressions, conveying messages and getting meaningful responses. Greetings also provides us a culture specific form of initiating communication, a non threatening means of expressing our individuality and a socially acceptable means of reaching out to another. It is in our interest therefore to observe the greeting styles, practice the same so as to ensure that it is done right and most important of all make sure we don’t use greetings as just a formality but we need to make sure that when we GREETwe are in fact Giving Recognizable Enthusiastic Energetic Tribute.

Action Points:

  1. Study the various greeting styles in other cultures particularly in other Asian, African and Middle East countries. Ask yourself if you will be able to respond in like manner. Try a Japanese style of greeting and reflect on how you felt about it.

  2. Observe your own greetings when in a good mood, a foul mood and in an introspective mood. Also observe what you can learn about a person from his / her style of greeting. Practice greeting in social situations and try and meet new people at weddings, social gatherings etc. How important is a persons looks, smile and demeanor and how does it impact your own ability to go and make new friends? 
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