Business Etiquette Blunders Quiz
By Dr. Kathleen Pagana
was really happy with her new job and eagerly looked forward to the
annual holiday party. With
free drinks and great music, she really relaxed and partied hard.
Several weeks later, she was disappointed when she found out
that she did not get a promotion.
She was shocked when she found out that her behavior at the
party had gotten her the reputation of being a “loose cannon” and
“party girl.” She lost her credibility as being a good
representative for a company position that required a lot of travel
and business meals.
ever wished you knew more about business etiquette at holiday dinners,
interview luncheons, and award banquets?
Knowing some essential tips can help you benefit from these
opportunities without worrying about eating from the wrong salad bowl
or not properly introducing your guest to your boss. Test your
knowledge of business etiquette with the short quiz below.
1. A business meal is a time to relax and “let
loose.” True or
2. Whose name do you say first when introducing your
spouse to your boss? Spouse
3. Clothing is never neutral.
It either adds or detracts from a professional image.
True or false
4.. A man should wait for a woman in business to
extend her hand for a handshake.
True or false
5. A drink should be held in the right hand at a
cocktail party. True or
6. Where would you find your salad plate?
To the right of the entrée plate or to
the left of the entrée plate
7. Is it appropriate to tell an associate that she
has spinach in her teeth? True
8. If you need to excuse yourself during a meal, you
place your napkin to the left of your place setting.
True or False
9. BBQ ribs are a good meal option at a company
10. Pushing back your plate signals you are finished
eating. True or
1. A business meal is not a time to relax and “let
loose”. It is a test of
your social skills and your level of sophistication.
Your interpersonal skills, including your treatment of the wait
staff, are on display. One
of the biggest blunders at the business meal is alcohol abuse.
You can undo months and years of good impressions by excessive
drinking. The key point to
remember is that “business” should always be the number one item
on the menu.
2. The boss’s name should be said first.
Proper introductions have a pecking order with the person of
rank, honor, or importance being mentioned first.
The other person is being introduced or presented to the person
of honor. Follow these
three steps. One, say the
name of the key person. Two,
mention the name of the other person and say something about him or
her. Three, come back to
the key person and say something about him or her. Here is an example
where the boss is Mike Williams and the spouse is Cindy Clark.
I would like to introduce my wife, Cindy Clark.
Cindy is an interior decorator. Mike
Williams is our company president.”
book-ending the introduction with the person of importance.
3. True, clothing is never neutral.
Some people disagree and say; “I don’t judge a book by its
cover.” Maybe, this is true. However,
people do judge you. If you are at a business holiday party, remember
the key word is “business.” Dress
how you want when with your family and friends.
Women should avoid wearing clothes that are too tight, too
short, or too sexy.
4. False. A man
does not have to wait for a woman in business to extend her hand for a
handshake. Business should be gender neutral. Many men were taught to
wait for a woman to extend her hand in social settings.
Note that the etiquette for handshakes varies around the world.
So, if you are traveling to other countries or are meeting
international clients, check the protocol for handshaking.
5. False. Your
drink should be held in your left hand so your right hand is free for
handshaking. This also
prevents your right hand from being cold and damp.
6. Your salad plate is to the left of the entrée plate.
An easy way to remember this is to think of the BMW car.
From left to right, think Bread, Meal, Water.
Bread and all food to the left of the plate are yours.
Water and all drinks to the right of the plate are yours.
Knowing this will help you avoid taking the wrong bread, eating the
wrong salad, and drinking from the wrong water glass.
7. Yes, please tell an associate if she has spinach in her
teeth. An important part of etiquette is kindness.
8. If you need to excuse yourself during a meal, place your
napkin on your chair.
eating, people do not want to see a dirty napkin with food stains.
When the meal is complete and people are leaving the table,
place the napkin to the left of the plate.
9. BBQ ribs are not
a good meal option at a company banquet.
You need to keep your hands and face clean.
Remember that this is not your “Last Supper”.
Eat ribs on your own time and with your family and friends.
The best advise for “difficult to eat” foods is to not
order them at a business meal.
10. Pushing back your plate is not
the signal indicating that you are finished eating. Think of your
plate as a clock. Put your
fork and knife in the 10 and 4 o’clock
positions with the top of the utensils pointing at the number 10 and
the base of the utensils at the number 4.
The knife should be on the outside with its blades facing
inward towards the fork.
tips to help you project a professional and credible image in any
business setting. These
ideas will help develop relationships without worrying about etiquette
blunders you may be making.
Read other articles and learn more
about Kathleen D. Pagana.
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