What Does It Mean To Be Savvy?

woman running business presentation
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Have you ever heard the expressions, "business savvy," or "social savvy"? The person using either of these phrases is probably indicating that someone is smart, informed, and well mannered in specific settings. It is typically used in a positive manner as it relates to the person's corporate or social skills.

As with any etiquette topic, savvy style is a great part of whether or not you accomplish the goal of doing the job right or exude confidence among your peers.

When you are savvy you are in the know. You have an understanding of the how and why of a particular situation.

How Savvy Applies

Using the above definition, the savvy person is well informed and shrewd. This is why the man or woman of style seeks to gain more knowledge and increase his or her intelligence. The shrewd or savvy person has insight and sound judgment, both of which are especially pertinent when it comes to business and politics. This is why the person with savvy is a winner professionally and in personal relationships. You might see someone who is savvy as being popular and fun to be around.

Why Savvy Matters

The person who has mastered the art of being relationally savvy is able to build relationships that encourage both personal and career growth. This is important because these people who tend to be proactive as they also typically manage their business and relationship interactions well.

People typically  look up to a person who is savvy, which further increases their realm and powers of influence.

At work, the relationally savvy person is supportive of colleagues and friends and is able to use their skills in order to reach out to others and increase productivity. The savvy person also tends to possess very strong social skills that further enable them to be dynamically interactive both interpersonally and on the cooperative corporate level.

How Savvy Enhances Promotion

Practicing etiquette in your business and personal affiliations will do wonders for your relationships toward developing loyalty to your product, service or brand. In short, it is important for the self-promoter to develop an attitude of community.

One major mistake non-savvy self-promoters often make is that they try to do it alone. This is a sure way of short-circuiting your development. The savvy person seeks and heeds great counsel. This includes finding others who can coach or mentor as well as asking good questions that will enhance their business and situation.

The savvy person knows that networking is imperative to success and that reaching out beyond his or her scope of normal influence and involvement will do wonders toward increasing their bottom line and growth. So, the savvy person uses these proactive disciplines as part of their daily work ethic.

  • Don't limit your networks. Reach out beyond your obvious involvement. Seek out advice and connections with supervisors, peers, family members, religious leaders, friends and others in senior positions of authority.
  • Identify role models. Study and model your strategies and relationships after those you have observed to be successful and influential. Remember this might include public or historical figures as well as an elementary school teacher.
  • Reach out to others. Even though every savvy person is not necessarily an extrovert, this is a quality that goes a long way toward aiding in your quest to self-promote. If you are not naturally extroverted, you can still use social networking outlets such as Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter or Tumblr, to reach out.
  • Be in the know. Proper etiquette dictates that you are aware of your goals, and you know how to get what you need from others without being offensive. 
  • Get a coach. Even powerful business CEOs need mentors and coaches. A business coach or life coach can help you get where you want to be and beyond. Remember that coaching is about results and that is your ultimate goal for self-promotion.

Quotes from Famous People about "Style"

Being savvy also involves understanding how interaction relates to style.

Savvy people set trends in all aspects of style because they have shown that they are leaders who have confidence and understand human nature.

  • "It is always self-defeating to pretend to the style of a generation younger than your own; it simply erases your own experience in history." - Renata Adler
  • "Style is not neutral; it gives moral directions." - Martin Amis
  • "The most durable thing in writing is style, and style is the most valuable investment a writer can make with his time. It pays off slowly, your agent will sneer at it, your publisher will misunderstand it, and it will take people you have never heard of to convince them by slow degrees that the writer who puts his individual mark on the way he writes will always pay off." - Raymond Chandler
  • "A style does not go out of style as long as it adapts itself to its period. When there is an incompatibility between the style and a certain state of mind, it is never the style that triumphs." - Coco Chanel
  • "Fashion can be bought. Style one must possess." - Edna W. Chase
  • "Style is the dress of thoughts; and let them be ever so just, if your style is homely, coarse, and vulgar, they will appear to as much disadvantage, and be as ill received, as your person, though ever so well-proportioned, would if dressed in rags, dirt, and tatters." - Lord Chesterfield


Edited by Debby Mayne