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The Do’s and Do Not Of Proper Table Etiquette

Updated on January 1, 2020
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Kristie has worked in a nursing home for the last 12 years. She has held titles such a director and assistant director of activities.

Proper Dinning Etiquette

Table manners is an important role in making a good impression. Whether you are having lunch with a hopeful employer or business dinner with a coworker, manners can play an important role in the type of person you are. Many people where not taught proper etiquette because this is the fast food era, and we are all in a hurry. But, what if it means whether you get the job or someone else does who has better manners.

The Invitation

If you receive an invitation always respond within a week after receiving it. Always be punctual and it is also polite to bring a gift.

1. First things first. Remember what your mother always told you? Keep your elbows off the table and don't talk with your mouth full. I am always informing my children to please keep your mouth closed when you are eating, it drives me crazy. Do you know why she always told you to keep your elbows off the table? Because doing so creates a risk of flipping over bowls and cups.

1. Always place your napkin in your lap.The napkin is there to wipe your mouth as needed.

2. Always be polite saying "please" and "thank you"

3. My grandmother always taught me how to use the utensils. Start from the outside and work your way in. Your salad fork will be on the far left and then your entree fork next to it. Liquid utensils are on the right and solids are on the left.

Ordering You're Meal and Manners

1. Always remove your hat when entering a restaurant

2. Do not order the most expensive thing on the menu. This is a very bad idea. It would give me the impression you are just trying to impress me and I find it very rude.

3. If you need to get up and leave the table, put your napkin on the table.

4. If you do not like the food be polite an at least eat a small amount.

5. Do not make your plate so clean as if you have not ate in months.

6. Do not text while at a dinner. You would not want your guest to think whomever is on the phone is more important.

Remember to Leave a Good Impression

1. Always make it a point when leaving to thank the hostess

2. Always tell the person who made the dish, "That was good", or "It was delightful", even if it was not that good.

2. Remember to always send a thank you note.

Some people do not realize their behavior can be offensive to others. With good proper dinning etiquette and manners, you will be sure to leave a good lasting impression.


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