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Professionals and “Communication for Administrative Professionals” for the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP). As of October 2015, we became an IAAP Approved Program Provider. In addition to these, we also offer workshops at conferences, speaking engagements and consultations centered on topics relevant to the client’s needs, such as “Civility in the Workplace Issues,” “Netiquette and Social Media” (which includes case studies of social media fails and their lasting effects in relationships), “Your Online Brand vs. Personal Brand,” and “International Etiquette and Protocol.” PWL: What has been your greatest challenge since opening The Pope Institute? Pope: Our greatest challenge has been fighting the mindset that protocol and etiquette are antiquated concepts. They are not. We aren’t running a charm school.

The Pope Institute for Polish, Poise, and Etiquette hands out “tablesetting” cards to class participants and is currently in the design phase for “teaching placemats.”

I became certified in protocol and executive etiquette through Protocol Partners - Washington Center for Protocol Inc. in Washington, DC. The center’s founding partners were chief protocol officers within the federal government, primarily in military and diplomatic protocol. In 2014 I attended The Emily Post Institute’s “Train the Trainer” program on business etiquette in Burlington, Vt. Long before recognized etiquette authorities such as Amy Vanderbilt and Dorothea Johnson came along, Emily Post was an etiquette expert and was selected as one of LIFE Magazine’s most important Americans of the 20th Century. It was through The Emily Post Institute that I connected with my first client, the Duke Ellington School of the Arts. I was honored and grateful that The Emily Post Institute considered me for such a referral. PWL: What types of programs do you offer at The Pope Institute? Who are your typical clients? Pope: We have found that our best clients are organizations that understand the importance of protocol and etiquette. They are generally larger, multicultural organizations that embrace a culture of learning for their members. Because each organization has different needs, we develop seminar type programs, which include demonstrations, group exercises and hands-on opportunities tailored to an organization’s needs. One way that we are unique is that we bring our programs directly to the client. Our clients do not bear the burden of travel costs and lost productivity when we bring the programs directly to them. Examples of past programs include “Protocol for Meeting Professionals” for the Society of Government Meeting

Protocol describes the way things must be done. For example, there are various ways to address government officials, depending on whether it is business or social correspondence, and formal introductions or conversation. Protocol dictates the correct way to do things. Etiquette is more of an art form. While it is often defined as the “customary code of behavior in polite society,” it is more relational. It is about the consideration, respect and honesty that you show others. It is a people skill that helps build relationships and helps us navigate new situations. In a recent workshop, we discussed how it is easier to perceive rudeness in others before noticing it in ourselves and why it is important to employ consideration, respect and honesty in our dealings. After the workshop one attendee expressed that not only did she “re-learn some skills,” but she was also “inspired to transform her interactions with fellow human beings, assuming the best in them.” PWL: You told us that you are also developing a product line. Can you tell us more about that? Pope: Protocol and etiquette are not only our business, but they are also our passion. The goal is to have a product line that makes etiquette approachable. As we become more involved in the community, we would like to introduce these fun tools to younger children. We have produced “table setting” cards, and we are currently in the design phase for “teaching placemats.” We are looking forward to sharing them at community events and on our website as they become available in the near future. For additional information about The Pope Institute for Polish, Poise, and Etiquette, please visit or email Kimberly Pope at

Tracy Shevlin ( is a native Virginian and long-time Manassas area resident. She is a graduate of George Mason University where she is also an office manager. prince william living March 2016 | 19

Prince William Living March 2016  

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