The Art of War

In the Battlefield of Business you must be equipped with:

The Rules of Engagement For

Business Success!

How do Men and Women work together to create the best work environment for all?

I think its important to Reveal the Rules of Engagement!

Here are just the first two of five to be considered:

· Rule #1 – CONFIDENCE

The level of self-confidence maintained by both parties will help determine how well the interactions will play out.

One can interact with peers, supervisors or staff with confidence, utilizing leadership skills to improve the results of any transaction, negotiation or team work effort.

There isn’t a situation that can be described that wouldn’t benefit from both parties leaving the “baggage" behind and working from a position of self confidence.

Interaction between men and men, men and women and women and women are being tested constantly and will improve when both parties come from a position of confidence, leadership, and strategic partnership.

A lack of self-confidence creates duplicity, back stabbing and a defensive nature. It’s not always recognized but its there lurking in the background of every interaction.


· you either have confidence or you don’t

· You either have the skills to do the job or you don’t

· Approaching each interaction anticipating that you are required to “Prove Yourself" or the other party needs to do the same will cloud your ability to do the job you were hired to do!


· Act in a professional manner, assertive with CONFIDENCE

· make the most of every interaction

· Put your efforts on the same path going in the same direction.

The results are amazing because c onfident business partners create AMAZING RESULTS!

· Rule #2 – PHYSICAL Dos and Don’ts

Have you ever worked with someone who, when speaking to you, stands just a little too close?

Have you every worked with someone who wears too much perfume or cologne?

Have you ever worked with someone who could use a breath mint all the time?

What about the women who love to hug everyone, or the man who likes to put his arm around both his male and female’s staff’s shoulder as a sign of appreciation or camaraderie?

These are all signs of the physical don’ts – everyone needs their space. Business relationships are much more successful when all parties are not feeling they are in compromising physical positions. Nothing inappropriate implied here – just uncomfortable


1. Keep your space when making your point, be sure you make eye contact from a proper distance to allow the other party to digest your words and body expressions without feeling “backed into a corner" or “crowded" as you try to convince the other party your position is the one and only choice!

2. When meeting your professional counterpart, extend a hand, not a hug.

3. Men, women and men alike don’t always like the pat on the back or squeeze of the arm, embrace of the shoulder.

4. Great rule of thumb: If you wouldn’t do that physical move with a business associate of the same sex, don’t make the physical move with the opposite sex. Women, just because you might hug and kiss an old friend of the female persuasion, don’t hug and kiss a female business associate and for sure don’t hug and kiss a male business associate. It’s hard to be taken seriously if you are hugging and kissing the team! Men, same approach applies: if you wouldn’t hug and kiss a male business associate there is no reason to hug and kiss a female business associate. You want her to respect you the same way her male counterpart would.

These are just the first two rules. There are three more to review in my next article. See you next time.

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Diane Dutton is an MBA, CPA, Speaker, Woman's Financial Coach and Career Advisor, Author of "A Woman's Ladder To Success is Paved With Broken Glass Ceilings". and now the newest breakthrough work "The Winning Edge".  With 29 years of executive corporate experience, she consults with CEOs of small and mid-size companies as well as speaks accross the country on business finance and helping women break through the glass ceiling of their career.  Ms. Dutton is a member of NAWBO, WAN, NAFE, TMA, NSCPA and the AICPA,  You can find more at