How to be a modern gentleman when in a relationship?

Most women assume chivalry is dead – so much so that it’s such a pleasant surprise when a guy makes an effort to open a door or offer them their coat. There’s no doubt that expectations of the modern gentleman are changing. The same goes for how guys view chivalry. Many guys think it’s a double standard that women expect to be treated as an equal and yet when it comes to opening doors and paying for the bill, the onus is on the man.

Thankfully, the definition of being a gentleman has changed—for the better—as many of these outdated notions have long passed away. Being a modern gentleman is no longer associated with being a man of high social position and wealth. In fact, one does not need to look any further than the five o’clock news to know that money and power do not buy class.

Today, being a modern gentleman is a matter of choice. It is a title you earn through an unwavering commitment to invest in your character. It is not about perfection, but a constantly renewed pursuit of excellence. Gentlemen are not stiff, pretentious, or focused on elevating themselves. Instead, they strive to succeed while helping those around them succeed as well. Being a gentleman means that you care about how your choices impact others. It is about human connection.

But guys, admit it or not, ladies really love chivalry. Here are some of the qualities of a modern gentleman.



A true gentleman is well-mannered, and can effortlessly navigate social and professional settings with confidence and proficiency. He stays abreast of current etiquette guidelines, and uses social acumen to navigate shifting norms. As a result, he is as comfortable at a casual gathering with friends as he is in the boardroom. He returns his shopping cart, says “please” and “thank you,” holds doors open for others, tips generously, and smiles often.


A modern gentleman is generous with his time, wisdom, and resources. He looks for ways to help others. He is a servant leader, and his commitment to interpersonal kindness creates a positive workplace culture that boosts commitment, engagement, and performance.


A modern gentleman chooses to be positive. His positivity is contagious, and his consistent encouragement draws others to him. He practices gratitude, which research shows lowers his blood pressure, improves immune function, reduces stress hormones, and facilitates better sleep.


A modern gentleman is confident in that he knows the value of what he brings to the table. He seeks competence, not perfection. His body language and commanding personal presence identify him as a leader. He stands upright, walks with purpose, avoids hiding his hands in his pockets, and extends a firm handshake.


A gentleman embraces civility by valuing all people and treating everyone with respect. From the janitor to the CEO, he carefully considers how his behavior and words impact others. He treats female and male colleagues with the same respect. According to a study of nearly 20,000 employees around the world, no other leadership behavior had a bigger effect on employee commitment and engagement than respect. Civility is the hallmark of great leadership, and it pays.

Hard Worker

A gentleman possesses a strong work ethic. He takes great pride in his work and strives to give his very best every day. He is reliable, dedicated, self-disciplined, humble, and a team player. He leads and is led well. People want him on their team.

Sharp Appearance

A modern gentleman understands the power of his appearance—that the way he chooses to dress, groom, and carry himself is either a bridge or a barrier to his success because what people see, is what they expect. He takes no days off from excellence, and his consistently sharp appearance demonstrates respect for himself and his environment, wherever he may be. He conducts an annual image audit to ensure that his appearance is up-to-date and supports his goals.

Effective Communicator

A modern gentleman is well-spoken and a focused listener. He demonstrates conversational competence and leaves others feeling inspired, engaged, and understood. He manages his tone and body language to maximize connection. He knows that hearing is a passive physical process, but listening is an active mental process that requires work. As a result, he strives to really listen to what people have to say while also effectively communicating his point of view.

Person of Integrity

A modern gentleman does the right thing even when no one is watching. He is a man of his word, and is not swayed by peer pressure or popular opinion. The man he is at work is the same person you will encounter in the community and at his home.