Articles and Publications

Tulsa People - August 2022

Mind your manners: Local coach Susan Ellis makes etiquette common sense

Jane Zemel

July 29, 2022

Susan Ellis is an accredited etiquette expert whose business, Good Manners, helps Tulsans master social and professional skills.

At a gathering, one should hold one’s glass in one’s left hand so one is free to shake hands with one’s right. Who knew?

Susan Ellis, that’s who. She is an accredited etiquette expert who arrived in Tulsa a year ago from Australia. Her new business, Good Manners, helps clients feel comfortable in social situations. Classes are customized for tweens, teens, adults and companies. Down Under, etiquette is part of the school curriculum.

“This is something I grew up with. Common sense,” she says. Her goal is to help people become better versions of themselves.

“Many parents weren’t taught social graces, so how can they be expected to teach their children?” Ellis asks. She teaches in three-week modules, putting a modern spin on established traditions.

Her curriculum includes life skills — how to apply for a bank loan, bank account or a rental agreement — as well as comportment, or how to carry yourself confidently. “It’s so ‘Bridgerton,’” she jokes.

Ellis instructs clients about online dating — something she knows about since meeting her Tulsa-based husband online five years ago. 

Her skills can benefit athletes with media training to help them represent universities or sponsors. She also covers digital issues. “People forget how to communicate properly,” she says, warning that looking at phones can result in poor posture and spinal issues. 

And table manners still count. Depending on the age of her pupil, Ellis will teach interview skills and take them on a fake lunch in which the student can try out the new dining etiquette they learned as Ellis pretends to be a prospective employer. “If they don’t eat properly, they’re not the right fit,” she says definitively.

Ellis makes etiquette accessible to everyone, calling it “an affordable investment.” Her students are well-prepared for internships, employment and any business or social setting. 

“They learn to walk tall and look people in the eye,” she claims. “Etiquette takes you through school, college, interviewing, career and life. How do you put a price on setting kids up for life?”