Ching’s favorite things include designer shoes, Japanese cookies, and good manners.
Clockwise from left: Laura Ching, a Robert Del Carlo heel, and a box of Yoku Moku cigare cookies
In 2003, Laura Ching left a marketing job at Walmart.com to co-found Tiny Prints, a Sunnyvale, California, business that sells invitations, announcements, and other customized stationery online. The business is a perfect fit for Ching, a stickler for proper etiquette. Here are two of her favorite things.
Roberto Del Carlo Heels "I discovered this brand at Blu, a local boutique in Palo Alto, California. I'm only 5 feet 2 inches tall, so I need shoes that give me extra height without sacrificing comfort. These are the most comfortable pair of heels I own. I can wear them to run after my two kids, then hop on a plane and go straight to a business meeting. The shoes are so simple and classic. They'll never go out of style. I like them in gray, because it's such a versatile color." Cost: $450
Yoku Moku Cigare Cookies "When I was a child, my mom used to give these Japanese cookies as hostess gifts. I'm a sucker for pretty packaging, and Yoku Moku's boxes are so cute and petite. The cookies, which come plain or with chocolate filling, also taste amazing. They just melt in your mouth like butter. I have a whole stash in my house that I give as gifts for special occasions or just as a way of saying thanks to friends, family, and business associates." Cost: $25
Ching's Etiquette Rules:
Make it personal. "I often send hand-written thank-you notes to employees, suppliers, and vendors. Taking time to write a personal note is highly valued in today's world."
Show some respect. "I always give employees at least 24 hours to prepare for meetings. I also ping them by e-mail to see if it's OK to stop by their desk for a chat, instead of just interrupting them."