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Household Butler Etiquette

Some simple etiquette guidelines for our professional butlers


1. A Butler is expected to have short effective phrases at his fingertips for answering questions. He should refrain from giving yes or no responses.

2. A Butler must not talk too much, and any time it becomes imperative for him to talk, it should not be in a hoarse voice.

3. A Butler must deliver a letter, post, or newspaper on the writing side of the principal.

4. A Butler must always have a solution at his fingertips whenever requests are made. In the event that a special request is made, a Butler must check first before finding an alternative. He is expected to ask, “May I provide alternatives, Sir/Mam?”

5. A Butler should not have his hands on his back when delivering or serving. During royal events, a Butler ought to keep his arms by his sides, and the hands must be folded away gently.

6. Each time a Butler wants to enter a room, he should knock on the door thrice.

7. It is essential for a Butler to move elegantly. If possible, he must engage in soft and round movements.

8. It is inappropriate for a Butler to point with a finger. He should use an open hand.

9. A Butler should avoid the word “but” instead, he should use “nevertheless”.

10. A Butler must not leave a guest or principal without asking: What else can I do for you Sir/Mam? – This is an unpardonable sin a Butler can commit. A Butler should verify and reply at all times.

11. A Butler is forbidden to receive thanks to himself. He should do so on behalf of his principal.

12. In case the principal shows appreciation to the Butler, he is expected to say, “It is a joint effort, Sir/Mam…”

13. Any answer must be provided on the principal’s behalf. He is expected to say, “It is on Mr/Mrs so and so behalf.”

14. A Butler should not correct the principal: He should use the right answer technique such as, “As you know Sir/Mam”

15. If it becomes necessary to move a drinking glass, the Butler ought to grip the bottom of the stem with two fingers.

Household Butler Etiquette

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