The gloves are off. Dignity and respect, or appalling and disrespectful? All parties after the fact will have their own narrative. Round three make take on a different tenor. In a presidential debate setting big brother isn’t watching; the world is watching. Apply the Golden Rule: Treat others in the same manner you wish to be treated. Keep things civil so the debate doesn’t morph into a debacle. Here are some etiquette tips for polite behavior at the podium:
- Make Eye Contact. It’s an important form of non-verbal communication skill which shows confidence and respect.
- No Pacing, Please. Watch your hands and body language when speaking. Be steady and consistent.
- Don’t Argue With The Debater. Attack the idea, not your opponent.
- Stay On Topic. Don’t present opinions as facts.
- Don’t Interrupt The Debater Or Moderator. The rules are set up ahead of time. You agreed to them, so stick to them.
- Avoid Getting Emotional. This includes attacking, exaggerating and wrangling.
- Smile If You Disagree. Never let your opponent see you sweat, and avoid ‘under the breath’ jabs.
- Control Your Tone. The quality of your message, attitude and pitch should be strong, not derogatory.
- Avoid Personal Attacks. If it’s just your opinion than say so. Even if you’re a highly skilled debater, watch your dialogue.
- The Truth Will Set You Free. If you distort or falsify facts, the truth will be revealed.
Red, White or Blue: United We Stand When Discussing Politics