Nancy MitchellNancy R. Mitchell is an established protocol and etiquette consultant and advisor with more than 30 years of experience in the field. Currently, she is an adjunct faculty member at George Washington University, where she developed and teaches protocol courses to Event Management Certificate Program students in the School of Business and Public Management, and at Stratford University, Falls Church, VA. She serves also as protocol and special events consultant to the Library of Congress, the world’s largest library and cultural center. For 23 years, Mitchell was Director of Special Events and Public Programs at the Library of Congress where she and her staff were responsible for planning and managing over 400 events each year. She coordinated the institution’s major special events, visits of heads of state and other foreign dignitaries, fundraising galas, conferences and meetings. As the Library’s chief protocol advisor, she served as liaison to the White House, U.S Department of State, the Congress, the Supreme Court and other government agencies, foreign embassies, academia and corporations. Mitchell owns The Etiquette Advocate, Inc., a firm providing etiquette and protocol training to corporations, universities, embassies, government agencies, non-profit organizations and individuals. She is the etiquette consultant to Engaged! magazine, has been featured on Good Morning America, Fox 5 News, WTOP Radio and National Public Radio, and is quoted on matters of etiquette and protocol by the New York Times, Washington Business Journal, and the Washington Post. She is a co-owner of the firm, Protocol Partners-Washington Center for Protocol, Inc., and is a member of the Protocol and Diplomacy International Protocol Officers Association and the Women Business Owners of Montgomery Country (MD).
Host: What are some tips regarding gift giving with friends and family?
Nancy Mitchell: Stand within your means and gift for the right reasons. If you are friend and giving because you are obligated to give you know someone is giving you a gift and you must give them a gift. You may be giving for the wrong reason. Have a sincere talk with yourself and say, does the occasion merit a gift, is my relationship is close enough with that person, be a friend or a relative to give a gift and then make that decision. So, many people jump into buying a gift when a card will do just the same purpose you are same in a card and thinking about you this is an important occasion I am sharing my friendship with you, I am sharing my thoughts with you that may be perfectly appropriate in place of a gift you don t always have to give a gift for every occasion in every ones life. You just need to consider the circumstances and your relationship and then choose accordingly. Also, choose gifts that are going to be appropriate for the person and when in doubt it's perfectly alright to choose gift cards or make a donation or contribution in someone s name for cause that you know it's important to them or is important to you. The gift can also reflect your likes, your philosophy if will, if you decide on a gift that is eco friendly that is perfectly alright even if you know the other person doesn t shares your views. So, it's a sign if you a well choosing a right gift for somebody but you just want to make sure it's appropriate you have not sent the wrong message and you are not spending more money then you should be for the relationship or for where you are in your career your budget whatever.