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Business Dining Etiquette

Table setting
Credit: KillerChihuahua / CC BY-SA 3.0

Business executives are constantly on their toes when dealing with important clients or business partners. Formal dinners can be rather - pressurizing in situations where executives need to demonstrate their best dining etiquettes, proper communication, dress code. A few tips kept in mind will certainly help in tiding over the hardest of situations and securing a business deal for your company.

Dining etiquettes are very important during business dinners, many times business deals are cracked over a dinner table not only in Dubai but across the world. Whether dinner is at an elegant restaurant or at a formal corporate dining hall, it does not matter, as long as table manners are meticulously followed. The following tips will certainly mark the boundaries of Dining Etiquette:


1.   Arrive on time. If you are going to be late, make sure to inform your client or business partner.
2.   Dress conservatively.
3.   After sitting down, quietly unfold your napkin and place it on your lap. Fold it in half and place the folded half towards your waist.
4.   Before starting with the dinner, wait for all your client or business partners to arrive
5.   Keep cell phones on silent or vibrating mode.
6.   Maintain proper upright posture while dining.
7.   Keep elbows off the table.
8.   Avoid telling your menu choices, let the host decide.
9.   IF you have to order the fo in for simple menu items that can be eaten with a knife and fork, chopsticks, avoid unknown food.  
10.   Start your meal after everyone starts his or hers.
11.   Use both knife and fork together to cut your food.
12.   Taste your meal before making any additions.
13.   Eat-in small bites and try to finish your dinner at the same time as everyone else.
14.   Stir your soup gently from the farthest edge, instead of blowing it. Drink soup from the edge of the spoon and not putting the whole spoon in your mouth.
15.   If bread is in the shape of a loaf, tear it with hands and not a knife.
16.   If you have something in your mouth that you cannot swallow, inconspicuously remove it with your fork.
17.   If you want to bring a problem to the waiter's attention, do it discreetly.
18.   After finishing your meal, place napkin to the left of the plate. The knife and fork should be placed in the centre of the plate in the five a clock position. The waiter will know that you have finished your meal.
19.   Decide beforehand how the bill is going to be paid
20.   Tip 15% for moderate service and 20% for excellent service. Tip charges vary according to location and country.


1.   Do not hurry to know the arrival status of your clients. Wait at least 15 minutes after the scheduled time, before calling up.
2.   Do not put bags, briefcases, and other accessories on the table.
3.   Do not change the order of dining utensils placed on the table.
4.   Do not reshuffle the order of dining utensils according to your handedness.
5.  ( For Women)Do not apply make-up while on the table.
6.   Do not bite on ice or talk when the mouth is full.
7.   Do not slurp soups or drinks or make noises while chewing food.
8.  Do not eat your food with mouth open.


Biplab Poddar
I am so thankful to the blogger for this post. So much information given about. Thank you so much.
For any business, your behaviour with others matters a lot. Thank you for sharing above information.
Thanks for that bread tip. I didn't know that you should tear it if it is in a loaf. Little things like you really have to be told that, especially in business settings!
Franca Whyte
This is a quite interesting and informative piece you've shared here. I am glad I came across this blog post and actually I think I will bookmark this blog to get more updates. Thanks for the wonderful article here. You're an incredible writer.
Rebecca Gardner
Thanks for explaining that it's polite to taste our meal before adding anything additional to it like seasonings. I'll be traveling for my work soon and expect to have at least a few dinners with potential clients while I"m in the country. I appreciate you teaching me these tips to keep in mind to ensure I don't offend anyone by mistake!

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