… a core concept in Leadership Skills and Atlas 109


“La ponctualité est la politesse des rois.” Louis XVIII

Concept description

Punctuality, defined by Vocabulary.com as “the quality or habit of adhering to an appointed time,” has been called “the politeness of kings” and a reputation for punctuality helps one become more effective in an organization.

Punctuality may seem to be a rather minor behaviour, and, indeed, it is not mentioned specifically in either the Michigan State Behavioral Competencies or the CMHC Dictionary of Behavioural Competencies.

Nevertheless, it is very black-and-white indication of Respectfulness. As Bud Bilanich writes in Your Career Mentor:

Here is one of the easiest ways to make a positive personal impact: show up on time.

Bilanich notes that Louis XVIII, King of France in the late 18th and early 19th century is reputed to have been the author of the aphorism “Punctuality is the politeness of kings” and says:

Kings (especially before the revolution) didn’t need to be punctual. They could show up when they wanted.  After all, people would wait for them. But Louis suggests that one way a king can show respect for other people is to meet them at the appointed time. If this is true for kings, it certainly is true for you and me.


Bud Bilanich, Punctuality – the Politeness of Kings, and a Key to Positive Personal Impact, Your Career Mentor, at http://www.budbilanich.com/punctuality-the-politeness-of-kings-and-a-key-to-positive-personal-impact/, accessed 15 February 2016.

Atlas topic and subject

Working in Organizations (core topic) in Leadership Skills.

Page created by: Ian Clark, last modified on 15 February 2016.

Image: Character Trades, at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8DRz2K4JyDs, accessed 15 February 2016.