Proper Etiquette For Dining Out With An Employer

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Is a dinner with your boss or coworker on the horizon? This is a great opportunity to network in a semi-formal or informal setting. Here are the etiquette tips you should know to make your next business dinner a success.

Arrive On Time

Arriving on time - or even early - signals to your employer that you value their time. If something comes up that makes you late, make sure to communicate it clearly.

Dress Appropriately

Just like with a business interview, how you dress for dinner with your boss, coworker, or employer sends an important message. Make sure to dress appropriately for the occasion - it’s a good idea to research the restaurant and plan your attire according to the atmosphere.

For women:

  • Avoid wearing clothing that is too tight or too low-cut
  • Wear subdued jewelry
  • Apply just a small amount of perfume
  • Keep your makeup simple, and in neutral colors - save the magenta eyeliner for a party with your friends

For men:

  • Match your business socks with your suit
  • Avoid using too much aftershave or one that has a strong scent
  • At a loss for what to wear? A blazer or sport coat strikes the right balance between casual and formal

Keep The Conversation Buzzing

Nothing keeps a dinner hopping like lively conversation. Many of us feel a bit hesitant about what to say at the beginning of a dinner, but don’t let dead air fill the room. We also recommend resisting the urge to check your phone.

If you know your coworkers well, consider asking them about how their kids are doing or what's happening with the sports team they follow. People love talking about themselves.

If you don't know your coworkers well, start with some simple getting-to-know you questions.

Above all, you should feel comfortable being yourself. With that said...

...Don't Order Alcohol

Even if your boss or coworker presents a wine list, it is still not advisable to order an alcoholic beverage. Alcohol lowers your inhibitions and may cause you to talk or behave in a way that is not business-appropriate. It's best to stick with water or a soda in this situation, unless they insist.

Good luck with your next business dinner! Contact David's Soundview Catering for all your corporate food service needs.