Do you stand when a lady enters the room?


Does the modern gentleman still stand for a lady when she enters the room? It is a custom that is seldom followed these days, but some gentlemen do still do it. I can see why it is not widely adopted, if you get it wrong it can be uncomfortable for all involved. To save any awkward moments and follow The Mitchelli’s top tips for this most gentlemanly of etiquettes and you will never be caught out again.

Although standing when a lady enters a room sounds very formal, it really isn’t that stuffy. When greeting someone it is so much easier to do so when you are both at the same eye level. Think of it this way, if a good friend came up to you, you wouldn’t try and shake hands from a seated position – it would be too awkward, you would get up and greet your friend properly.

If you apply this logic to when a lady enters the room, you stand to greet her. If done in a relaxed manner as a way of acknowledgement, it can be a great way of both building rapport and giving the lady in question an ice breaker in, what could be an awkward social setting for the lady too (depending how formal the occasion). Point of note: – Because you only greet someone once per occasion, you don’t need to be up and down like a yo-yo, just when she enters the room for the first time, or joins your table. You do not need to jump up and down every time a lady goes to the rest room!

With this in mind you can see standing for a lady is not the stuffy formal affair it is sometimes made out to be, it is good manners and just happens to be a practical use of common sense.

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  1. Excellent article once again.

    I was having a conversation with a very interesting fellow on this topic just the other day, as it happens.

    I’d agree with everything you say, although I do like to give a little “half stand” when a lady excuses herself or rejoins the table. Almost as if I’m in the process of getting up, but then don’t follow through. It probably seems ridiculous, but it is a gesture that acknowledges the lady without making a big fuss or making anyone feel uncomfortable.

    There are so many examples of this sort of etiquette that have fallen off over time. However, I think that, like the english language, etiquette adapts itself through usage. The situations have changed somewhat, and to apply the same etiquette that was developed for a different society’s in today’s is similar to sending a letter rather than an email. Whilst the former is still perfectly socially acceptable, it does stand out as rather anachronistic.

    So, whilst I think that etiquette is incredibly important and we men should always strive to be the best we can be, we do also need to be flexible and adaptable. We need to be relevant to our times. In short, we need modern gentlemen, which is what this site is all about, after all. So, with that in mind, we should not adhere rigidly to the rules of the past, but be the men that set the new standards of the future.


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