Category: Business Etiquette

10 Simple Rules of Using Cutlery in Fine Dining

Wading your way through an array of cutlery in fine dining can be quite challenging!

So here are 10 simple Rules of Using Cutlery in Fine Dining:

  1. Always use the cutlery from “Outside-In”. This simple rule can be very handy since you don’t need to know which spoon and fork to use for what as long as you remember to use the cutlery one by one from the outside in.
  2. Soup spoon should scoop outwards in the bowl before bringing it your mouth.
  3. Use fork to push the food into the spoon and eat with the spoon. Always remember not to put the whole spoon into your mouth.
  4. Always remember to eat discreetly. Never use your teeth to clear food from the spoon or fork.
  5. Use two pieces of cutlery wherever given. Use the fork to eat and the knife to cut. However, when there is a fork and spoon, use the spoon to eat and the fork to help in moving the food to the spoon.
  6. Cut your food into a small bite. Cutting all the food at once and eating with only a fork in hand is unacceptable in Europe, but acceptable in America.
  7. Eat foods like bread with hand. Bread is never cut – it is torn with hand.
  8. Keep the cutlery down before holding glassware.
  9. For pudding use the spoon to eat and the fork to push the food into the spoon.
  10. At the end of a mean, place the fork and knife or spoon close to each other, side by side. This indicates you are finished. Fork and spoon placed, with the top ends meeting and the bottom ends far apart indicates you are still eating.

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Filed under: Business Etiquette

Etiquette Of Eating With Hands – Do’s and Don’ts for eating with hands:

Traditionally, eating with hands was unacceptable in many cultures but this rule is now changing. With multi-cultural work environments and widespread international travel, people are becoming more open to eating with hands.

Some acceptable finger foods across cultures are: pizzas, burgers, bruschetta, bread, French fries, tacos etc. However, in formal dining certain guidelines should be kept in mind.

Do’s and Don’ts for eating with hands:

  1. Do not eat messy foods like curry with hands, unless that’s the local tradition.
  2. While eating with hands, use the napkin frequently to wipe your hands and face.
  3. Never lick your fingers while eating with hands.
  4. Take small bites and break food into small portions.
  5. Use your fingertips to hold the food.
  6. If food spills on the plate, use a spoon or fork to lift it.
  7. It’s ok to eat tacos with hand but not any filing that has fallen on the plate.
  8. Do not blow food to cool. If the food is too hot to hold, it’s probably too hot to eat.

While eating with hands, other common dining etiquette must not be forgotten.

Some quick dining tips are:

  • Do not tuck the napkin in your collar, pace it on your lap.
  • Use the napkin frequently but only for your hands and mouth.
  • Chew with your mouth closed.
  • Do not be loud and crass.
  • Elbows should always be off the table.
  • Do not use your phone.
  • Do not pick up cutlery from the floor and use.

These simple rules can make any dining experience a cake-walk!

For more on Dining Etiquette look up the Training Programs of Strengthscape.

Filed under: Business Etiquette

Dressing For Formal Dinning – Let’s look at 6 easy dressing tips

It is said “Dressing well is a form of good manners”. This adage is especially true for formal or fine dining occasions. The way you dress demonstrates not only your personality but your regard for others as well.

Formal or fine dining by definition are formal events that require you to dress for the occasion.

Let’s look at 6 easy dressing tips:

  1. Fine Dining suggests a formal event and as such requires formal dressing. However, the decision between wearing a tuxedo or a smart business suit will depend on the occasion. In case of a formal invite, read it carefully for dress code. A tuxedo for a formal dinner where the dress code is mentioned and a business suit for a dinner with senior business colleagues is an easy norm to follow.
  2. The same stands true for women. An evening gown or traditional attire for a formal dinner and a smart business suit for official gathering.
  3. Match your accessories to what you wear. Sleek and formal accessories can never go wrong. Too much bling should be avoided for all formal dinners. For women, too much jewelry can even interfere with your eating. Gentlemen should match the color of shoes and belt with suit. Ladies should color coordinate their dress, shoes and purse.
  4. Minimize accessories. Follow the mantra less is more!
  5. Be comfortable in what you wear. Clothes are as much a style statement as a statement of self.
  6. Plan in advance. Just throwing together something last minute rarely results in wonders.
  7. Ask people around for advice. Sticking out like a sore thumb is awkward. If you are unsure check with others what they are wearing for the event. Appropriate attire is the key.
    So think about what you wear to the next formal dinner!

For more tips on grooming and etiquette look up the Corporate Etiquette Programs of Strengthscape.

Filed under: Business Etiquette

Rules For Buffet Dining You Didnt Know Existed

Most assume that etiquette should be reserved for fine dining or formal dining, buffets are too casual to bother with manners!

This assumption, though true for some occasions, is misplaced. There is certain etiquette of buffet dining, that if followed can make it a pleasant experience not only for you but for people around you as well.

So here are some rules of Buffet Dining:

  1. Beware of the “all you can eat buffet”! These buffets should come with a “hazardous to health” sign! The end of such a buffet mostly results in self-loathing because you eat things you don’t like and fill an appetite you don’t have! The rule to follow here is: “You don’t have to try everything”.
  2. Don’t pile your plate till it becomes taller than Mount Everest. Take things you like and take them in moderation.
  3. Wait till you are seated before you start sampling the food. This simple act not only displays basic etiquette but can also prevent serious accidents.
  4. Maintain distance from people ahead of you in the queue. Shoving and nudging will not make the queue move faster.
  5. Don’t forget the basic dining etiquette of using a napkin and cutlery.
  6. In most countries, it is imperative to take a clean new plate for every serving.
  7. Be polite to people serving you. Saying a “thank you” or “please” goes a long way.
  8. For self-service counters, use the right spoons and tongs and don’t leave them in the dish.
  9. Never use hands to serve the food.
  10. Don’t reach across the table to grab the seasoning or ketchup. Ask someone to assist you.

It is important to follow the right dining etiquette to make the experience pleasant for yourself and others.
Strengthscape specializes in corporate programs on Dining Etiquette.

Visit our website for more information.

Filed under: Business Etiquette

Mind Your Language – A Guide To Dining Conversations

Business dinners can be a great place for networking or letting your hair down after grueling work. But things can go downhill really fast if you are not careful about what you say at the dining table. It can be difficult to redeem yourself after an inappropriate or rude remark and a group of people sitting in uncomfortable silence, all because you didn’t know about appropriate dinner conversations.

So here are a few tips for smooth dinner table conversations:

  1. Stick to Pleasant Topics – Talk about things that are generally liked by people like music or movies or art. Such topics are easy to talk about and do not result in a negative response.
  2. Say no to controversies – Controversial topics can lead to arguments and negative vibe from people. Since everyone has an opinion on controversial issues you will be treading on thin ice.
  3. Include Everyone in the Conversation – It is polite to converse with everyone. Forming groups on a dining table can be viewed as rude. However, don’t shout over the table, especially in formal dining.
  4. Steer Clear of Unpleasant Topics – Unpleasant things like illness, death and suffering are not ideal dinner table conversations.
  5. Be Sensitive to Cultural Diversity – Today’s workplaces are multi-cultural. It is important to know acceptable behaviors of different cultures. Being culturally sensitive is no longer just a fad, it is the need of the workplace etiquette.
  6. Use Humor Carefully – Everyone likes to get a good laugh at their jokes. But be careful not to overstep and hurt someone in the group. Highly diverse teams with respect to culture, gender and age are the norm today and require sensitivity and tact in social situations.
  7. Be Polite – Your language and body language should be polite at all times. Again, this becomes a challenge where people come from across the globe and acceptable behaviors vary widely. Be polite not only to the people at the table but also to the service staff of the hotel or restaurant.

Sail through dinner conversations with these easy tips! For more on Business and Dining Etiquette look up our training programs at

Filed under: Business Etiquette

Dining and Business Etiquette How To Raise A Toast

Raising a toast is an integral part of most formal dining events, especially if the group has gathered to celebrate a special occasion like an annual gala, retirement of a senior person or team success.

So here is a guide to raising a toast:

  1. Attention – Stand in a prominent place and the get the attention of the audience. Wait for them to quiet down. Maintain eye contact with the audience.
  2. Introduce – Make sure everyone’s glass is full. For people who don’t take alcoholic beverages, non-alcoholic drinks should be provided. Hold your glass above your waist. Introduce yourself if they don’t already know you. Talk a bit about why you all are there – what is the occasion all about.
  3. Toast –Hold your glass high and raise the toast. Say a few short sentences or words naming the occasion or person. Keep it short so that everyone can repeat the toast after you.
  4. Sip – After raising the toast, take a sip of the drink and sit.
  5. Keep It Short – Keep the introduction and the toast short. No one wants to be bored with a tiresome monologue.

On many occasions you will be part of the audience and not the one raising the toast. Simple as this may sound, there are some basic rules for you:

  1. Stand – The moment you see someone ready to raise a toast, stand in your place. This may not be required at a wedding but most formal occasion, especially in the honor of a person require you to stand.
  2. Fill Your Glass – Ensure that your glass is full, even if it is fruit juice.
  3. Eye Contact – Look at the person raising the toast and hold you glass in your hand all the while.
  4. Toast – Raise your glass on the cue of the person raising the toast and repeat the toast after him.
  5. Sip – It is important to take a sip after the toast, before you sit or place the glass on the table.

So here’s to a perfect toast! For more on Dining and Business Etiquette look up

Filed under: Business Etiquette