Career and Dining Etiquette Tips

Here are some simple suggestions on how to improve your etiquette in both a dining and career setting. With these few tips, you might find your way to a first interview, a first job, or even a new career.


5 Things to Do:

1. Only cut enough food for your next mouthful. Take care to ensure your bites are small enough that you never get caught having to answer a question when your mouth is full.

2. Pass food to the right.

3. Place napkin on your lap as soon as you are seated. Leave napkin on your chair if you leave the table during the meal.

4. Once you’ve used a piece of silverware, always put it on your dish rather than half on and half off.

5. Use cutlery from the outside in. 

5 Things Not to do:

1. Never drink too much alcohol at a dinner engagement.

2. Never salt your food until you have tasted it first.

3. Don’t eat too quickly or too slowly. Eat at the pace of others at your table.

4. In a buffet situation, never overload your plate.

5. Never put keys, sunglasses, purses, briefcases or anything else not related to the meal on the table 


6 Things to Do:

1. Do gather general information about the company you are interviewing with. How long have they been in business? How do you pronounce their name? Is the company regional? National? International?

2. Do dress according to the way others in the company dress. If the company has specific colors, try dressing to match those colors.

3. Do wear a watch to keep track of how much time you have to speak with a company representative.

4. Handshakes are the only appropriate physical contact in the business world.

5. Always introduce someone with their name and title.

6. Always have your business card ready to be handed out. You never know when you might have an opportunity to network. 

6 Things Not to Do:

1. Never wear jewelry that is flashy or makes noise.

2. When you are in someone else’s office, never put things or touch things on his or her desk.

3. Never ask people where they got their clothes or what they cost.

4. Never mumble or speak unclearly when on the telephone. This if often the first time someone has interaction with you

5. Never show up late to a meeting or interview. Always bring something to write with.

6. Never ask someone how old they are.


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