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Pointing Finger Rude

Dear Dr. Dave & Dr. Dee,

What is the rule about pointing at people/objects? My co-worker often points his finger at people when he is commenting about them. Isn't this rude? Is it rude in other countries as well? This co-worker is going on a business trip overseas, and I was going to suggest to that he learn some business etiquette. What do you think?


Making a Point

Dear Making a Point,

Generally, pointing a finger at objects is okay, but not at people. However, it's best to gesture with an open hand when directing attention to a person or an object.

Some seemingly simple gestures and nonverbal actions can mean something quite different in other countries, and could be offensive and insulting. Your co-worker should become acquainted with the customs in other countries as part of basic good business protocol.