How to make formal introductions

Following the rules of etiquette. The standard rule is to introduce men to women, the younger person to the older, and those of lesser rank (or importance to you) to those of higher rank. Just say the higher ranking person’s name first. “Mother, this is my friend Julie.” “Dr. Brinkerhoff, may I present Mr. Frank Durr. ” “Debbie, I’d like you to meet Jim Smith. Jim, this is Debbie Donahue.”

If you want to introduce two people, but don’t remember the name of one of them, make a one-way introduction. In the case of Debbie and What’s His Name, simply say, “I’d like you to meet Debbie Donahue.” Jim should then introduce himself to Debbie. Since people often forget names, even if they shouldn’t, be ready to help your friends when you are being introduced by saying your name quickly if your friend gets stuck.

People often wonder how much detail to give when they are introducing a couple who live together or a group of relatives. The introducer should feel under no obligation to explain the intricate relationships among the people he or she is introducing. Simple names are enough. But it is polite to provide a little background information about the introduced person. “Frank is our office manager.” Or “Patty and I went to college together.”

When someone is being introduced to a group, everyone (men and women) should stand. Always make an effort to include a new member of a group in the general conversation. When being introduced to an individual, shaking hands is appropriate.