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Diane Gottsman
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Diane Gottsman is a national etiquette expert, sought out industry leader, accomplished speaker, television personality, author, and the owner of The Protocol School of Texas, a company specializing in executive leadership and business etiquette training. Her clients range from university students to Fortune 500 companies and her seminars cover topics ranging from tattoos in the workplace to technology at the dinner table and the proper use of social media.

Her advice is backed by a Master’s Degree in Sociology with an emphasis on adult behavior. Diane’s engaging demeanor and straightforward approach to daily etiquette dilemmas are current, informative, stylish and fun.
Diane is the resident etiquette expert for two popular morning talk shows, SA Living and Good Day Austin. She has been featured nationally on The TODAY Show, HLN, CBS Sunday Morning and WGN Chicago.

She is routinely quoted in media such as Kiplinger’s, CNN, Forbes, The New York Times, US News and World Report, The Boston Globe and Chicago Tribune to name only a few. She publishes weekly business etiquette articles on her blog.

Follow Diane’s mannerly tweets at @dianegottsman, talk to her on Facebook, follow her on Instagram and Pinterest, or visit her Protocol School of Texas website.

Entries by Diane Gottsman

Ask the Etiquette Expert: Dealing With Office Cliques

(0) Comments | Posted February 9, 2016 | 3:32 PM

I am often asked how to handle friendships in the workplace that may feel somewhat elite. When there's a small number of officemates who do everything together and seem to have formed an impenetrable circle, it can create an environment of hurt feelings and promote animosity among peers. While it's...

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Living Happily With a Spouse Who Has Opposing Political Views

(0) Comments | Posted February 3, 2016 | 7:51 PM

With election season well underway, the likelihood of politics entering the conversation is nearly unavoidable. These red and blue discussions have the potential to escalate when you are married or in a close relationship with someone whose views are the polar opposite of your own. Whether you made a pact...

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Why Is 'Thank You' Difficult for Some People to Say?

(0) Comments | Posted January 26, 2016 | 4:22 PM

For most people, expressing appreciation is a natural response to receiving a gift or accepting a kind gesture or compliment. In the business arena, acknowledging someone's efforts with a spoken: "Thanks for picking up the drawings on the way to work" is not only expected but an integral part of...

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Ask the Etiquette Expert: Making the Most of a Temporary Job Position

(0) Comments | Posted January 19, 2016 | 4:18 PM

Dear Diane,

I will be starting temp work next week to bring in some supplemental income as I continue my job search. Do you have any pointers regarding how to approach this phase of my professional career?

Whether you are between jobs or just starting out, a temporary position...

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Ask the Etiquette Expert: Breaking the Habit of Overusing an Apology

(0) Comments | Posted January 11, 2016 | 5:38 PM

Dear Diane,

I have gotten into a habit I am hoping you can help me break. I started a new job with a company, and my goal is to be promoted within the next several months. I find myself annoyed at coworkers who attend meetings and start...

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The Do's and Don'ts of an Unforgettable Thank You Note

(1) Comments | Posted January 6, 2016 | 1:20 PM

The first week of the New Year has many of us committing to personal development and the strengthening of meaningful relationships. As you master new skills, think more positively, grow your company and learn to use all of the technology you own, why not begin with a thoughtful thank you...

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How to Travel Light on Your Next Trip

(0) Comments | Posted December 29, 2015 | 1:51 PM

Whether traveling for business or visiting family and friends, packing efficiently can be a challenge. Not wanting to forget anything or feeling pinched for time, it's easy to panic and overfill your suitcase. Avoid the hassle (and extra airline fees) by traveling light. Pare down to the essentials and eliminate...

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How to Politely End a Conversation

(0) Comments | Posted December 21, 2015 | 2:39 PM

At networking functions or social gatherings, there's a time to mingle and a time to move on. For many people, the most difficult part of the conversation is knowing when and how to walk away. The goal is to leave the person glad they visited with you, instead of hanging...

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10 Things Every Holiday Host Should Know

(0) Comments | Posted December 7, 2015 | 5:04 PM

For many, December means festive parties in full swing and entertaining friends and family as you celebrate the season. Whether you're a longtime host or this will be your first time throwing a merry jamboree, here a few tips and tricks to get things rolling along.

  1. Make a game...
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Holiday Party Conversation: From Awkward to Awesome

(0) Comments | Posted December 2, 2015 | 10:01 AM

Beyond the decorations, gingerbread martinis and the perfect party outfit, holiday gatherings are all about the people. That's why part of your preparation as a guest should include being ready to chat.

The spectrum of party talk can range from positively painful to utterly absorbing. For many of us, it's...

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How to Plan the Perfect "Friendsgiving"

(0) Comments | Posted November 20, 2015 | 3:57 PM

While Thanksgiving is a ritual that often involves a combination of relatives, rich food, football, travel and mandatory family togetherness, Friendsgiving is, by definition, an alternative to the traditional holiday. It can be whatever you want it to be! The two main ingredients are great friends and good food. From...

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Five Ways to Professionally Disagree in Business

(0) Comments | Posted November 16, 2015 | 12:02 PM

Most of us strive to be team players, getting along with colleagues and contributing to a harmonious atmosphere at work. That said, there will be times when we disagree with someone else's opinion in the office. While serving on a committee, working on a group project or interacting with others...

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Food Allergies and Dietary Restrictions at the Holiday Table

(0) Comments | Posted November 9, 2015 | 4:16 PM

Special memories are made when friends and family gather together for a festive meal. When food allergies are involved, the host and the guest have an important role to play when it comes to breaking bread (or not) at the table.

Here are ten dining etiquette tips for safely navigating food...

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How to Write a Thank You Note That Shines

(1) Comments | Posted November 2, 2015 | 5:23 PM

I am often asked if I consider a handwritten thank you note outdated. My answer is a resounding NO. Taking the time to send a note is a polite way to show appreciation, acknowledge an act of kindness, congratulate a job well done, or recognize someone for their continued loyalty....

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How to Help a Friend Dealing With Divorce

(1) Comments | Posted October 28, 2015 | 4:23 PM

When a friend or relative is going through a divorce, it can be difficult to know what to do or say as you wrestle with your own conflicted feelings about the situation. Thankfully, your role is not to offer professional counseling, but rather, to walk with them during this challenging...

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How to Be a Better Listener

(0) Comments | Posted October 9, 2015 | 1:51 PM

Listening with intention is not always an easy task. In our daily lives, we are full steam ahead with demanding schedules, tasks, to-do lists and family obligations. We often do not take the time to process a person's entire message before responding.


Here are eight tips for honing your...

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Job Search Etiquette: Interviewing While Employed

(0) Comments | Posted October 5, 2015 | 6:41 PM

While in the market for a new job, you will always appear to be a stronger candidate when you are a valued asset to a team - even if it is a team you plan to leave. Arriving to an interview "unemployed" may raise a red flag and potentially pose...

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Dealing with a Difficult Client: When to Call It Quits

(0) Comments | Posted September 25, 2015 | 1:23 PM

While it is admirable to strive for client-pleasing service, there may come a point where your company is better served by ending a difficult business relationship. Firing a problematic client offers some advantages. Those that habitually make unreasonable demands, consume a disproportionate amount of your staff's time or chip away...

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Six Signs of a Deceptive Office Personality

(0) Comments | Posted September 22, 2015 | 1:47 PM

Building trusting relationships in a professional setting makes interacting with clients and coworkers more enjoyable. On the other hand, working side by side with a person who gives off an untrustworthy vibe can be a challenge and a chore. As you determine where you should invest your energy, here are...

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Five Ways to Succeed in Business

(0) Comments | Posted September 15, 2015 | 7:21 PM

  1. Play to your strengths. Everyone has their unique talents. For example, I am not interested in understanding how my computer works or what I need to do in order to fix it when my screen goes black. Instead of spending hours trying to locate the source of a hardware issue,...
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