10 necessary table manner and hospitality tips: the essential life soft skills

Over the years I have heard a number of reasons why good table manner are important, from “good manners open doors” to “a show of class” and the popular “because more business are being done over dinner”.While all those are very true and I could not agree more, my enlightenment came as an answer from a good friend. I have ranked it as the most important reason why good table manner matters.

“The invited guests are an extent of the host. Their behaviors represent the choices of the host, in quality, class and trust.”

Good table manner and social etiquette is more than about ourselves. As one shows good, others are represented in good as well.

Ten necessary table manner and hospitality tips

Dress for the occasion and proper hygiene: check for dress code as soon as you receive the invitation. If no dress code was stated on the invite or was not mentioned, ask. Prepare outfits early and make sure it is clean and wrinkle free. Have a second option ready. First impression takes 11 seconds to make and it is mostly done even before we speak. Keep refreshing mint or gum handy in case of heavy flavor food or drinks.

Dress code guide: Emily Post Dress Code Guide

Eat something light before going: No matter how much the host stress on the over flowing amount of food and how delicious it will all be, remember you are not the ONLY guest attending. Rushing in to eat is never a pretty sight. Have a light salad, some fruits, or a small sandwich wrap just before you head out to the party. Reception time is best to stick to just drinks and avoid carrying a plate with you as you will need your right hand to make handshakes from time to time.

Fast and easy snack guide: 17 high-protein snacks you can eat on the go

Arrive early: 5 to 10 minutes early arrival is a good rule of thumb to keep. As the human brain can remember 7 + or – 2 items at a given situation, arriving early allows you the advantage to introduce yourself to others who are also early, get to know them more and allow them to remember you. Arriving early also ease the stress for pressed time. Adjust time accordingly to traffic, parking, walking and etc.

How much can we remember: In the brain, 7 is the magic number

Turn phone on vibrate / silent: Have you ever had the experience of when someone’s phone starts ringing and see others who heard the ring turn their attention away from what they are doing to try to find out who’s phone is ringing? No matter how much you know that the phone that is ringing does not matter to you, you will still turn your attention away because it is a built in unconscious response in us. Such a disturbance in your attention also disturbs the conversation you are having with others. It translates to losing focus, interest or even disrespect in some occasions. So try to avoid such incident at the least by turning your phone’s ringer off.

Psychology Today: What can we do to stay in focus

Arrive with something for the host: If it is a dinner gathering, take the time to write a thank you card or bring some small gifts to the host to show your appreciation. Flowers, gourmet food items, etc. If it is a celebration gathering, make sure your gift is well wrapped, clearly labeled and do your best to give it into the hands of the person celebrating.

Gift ideas: There are chocolates, flowers, and these 55 simple gift ideas

Watch for your tone and volume of voice: Be alert to your voice and how it effect others le viagra en tunisie. Speak louder if others need you to repeat a few times. Speaker with a softer voice if others outside of your conversation circle keeps turning their heads to check on you. This, particular, is not a sign of your charisma. It is your voice disturbing others’ conversations.

Be a good help: How you treat the home of the host / venue of the event is a show of the quality of your character as well as the trust of the host in you. Take steps to clean up after yourself and help make others feel comfortable in good cleanliness.

Good old golden rules of table manner: Using the right utensils and plate signals are highly recommended.

setting official

plate signal


Be polite to the serving staffs: No matter who is serving, always remember to say please and thank you. It might be simple words for you, but for the water boy who is carrying pitchers of water from table to table, the serving waiter who is running in and out of slippery kitchen to ensure your food gets to you while it is still hot, a show of appreciation gives them, and more importantly, the by-standing managers, the literal approval of their job well done.

Stay to the end unless previously notifying the host: If you are attending an event where you leaving early is visible to the host and those near you, make sure you inform your host well in advance that you will and give a good reason why you must. When you do leave, leave very discreetly. Do say goodbye to the host before you do.

Kaila So

Founder and Head Etiquette Coach at Kira Modelle. Content Creator for Kira Modelle Blog. "I believe good manner serves as the boundless bridge that communicates across cultures and people. Good manner the channel to communicate as a behavioral action that reflects the thoughts we have inside. It is two sides to the same coin, both are indications a person's integrity despite occasions."

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