Sealing the deal at lunch
Executives can make or break a business deal using effective Business Lunch Etiquette techniques.
“Dazzling a potential client, business partner or employers with your good manners and social graces can result in a job offer or lucrative contract. Alternatively, a lack of composure or proper table etiquette could mean a missed opportunity.” warns Tracey Turner, executive director of The Creative Group.
Turner’s offers tips for executives to using during their next business lunch:
Don’t be late. Executives typically have a limited amount of time for lunch, so tardiness can be extra offensive. Greet your lunch date with a firm, warm handshake. Once everyone is seated and your host has placed his/her napkin on his lap, immediately do the same.
Know your way around the table
Familiarize yourself with a standard table setting. Beverages, soup spoon and knives will typically be on your right; forks and your bread plate will be on your left. The rule of thumb, start from the outside and work in, holds true when it comes to which utensils to use first. If you’re dining in an especially swank establishment, take a moment to brush up on the proper use of additional accoutrements, such as fish knives, finger bowls, etc.
Order with care
Ignore your craving for the barbecue pork sandwich or any other potentially messy dish. By sticking to easy-to-eat items, executives will save themselves the embarrassment of sauce dripping down your shirt. Also, don’t order the most pricey entrée if you’re not paying, and follow the lead of your host when it comes to appetizers, desserts and other extras. It’s best to refrain from drinking alcoholic beverages, even if your host orders one.
Give your host your undivided attention
Don’t start eating until your host has given you a cue to do so, and try not to leave the table until the meal has concluded unless it’s Sealing the deal at lunch
Robert Boroff Executive Profile Managing Director Reaction Search International
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