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Table manners play an important part in making a favorable impression. They are a visible signal of the state of our manners and therefore are essential to professional success. Regardless of whether we are having lunch with a prospective employer or dinner with a business associate our manners can speak volumes about us as professionals.
Use the napkin to gently blot your mouth when needed.
If you leave the table during the meal, place your napkin on your chair as a signal to the server that you will be returning.
The host will signal that the meal is over by placing his/her napkin neatly on the table ( to the right of his/her plate). Do not refold, but don’t wad it up either.
If, after looking over the menu, there are items you are uncertain about, ask your server any questions you may have.
An employer will generally suggest that your order be taken first . Sometimes the server will decide how the ordering with proceed. Often women’s orders are taken before men’s.
As a guest, you should not order one of the most expensive items on the menu or more than two courses unless your host indicates that it is all right.
Remember the rule “liquids to your right, solids to your left.”
It is important to place the glass wear, cup & saucer, etc. in the same position after its use in order to maintain the visual presence of the table.
Use of Silverwear
Starting with the knife, fork, or spoon that is farthest from your plate, work you way in using one utensil for each course.
How to use a Knife & Fork (American)
Hold the knife in your right hand and the fork in your left. Cut a few bite size piece of food, lay your knife across the top edge of your plate with the blade facing in. Change your fork from your right to your left hand to eat, fork tines facing up.
Same as the American style except that the fork remains in your left hand (tines facing down) while you eat.
When you have finished…
Do not push your plate away.
Lay your fork and knife side by side diagonally across your plate (the sharp edge of the knife face toward you, fork tines facing down).
Remember the 10 and 4 rule.
A few more things about silverwear…
Once you have used a piece of silverwear, never place it back on the table.
Do not leave a used spoon in a cup, place it on the saucer.