Business Dining/Entertainment Etiquette and Protocol

How can I let the servers know that I am in charge of the meeting (meal) and I want the check brought directly to me?

Generally if you are the host and you asked, you should be paying. It is important that you set the tone with your team prior to the meal (meeting) so

When you go out to dinner with co-workers and you have different status levels of employees, should the most senior person sit in a specific place or does this not matter?

Yes, you should definitely give this attention. If you are a guest, then you need to take the host’s lead. If you have a take control type personality, remember you

When out with a client at a restaurant and trying to win an account versus nurturing an account, wouldn’t your behavior and actions differ? I would be more likely to have a different approach for each situation and have a difference in behavior. Please clarify the proper etiquette for these situations.

It’s not that your behavior would be different, but that you might modify your behavior according to the purpose of the meeting (meal). For example, if you are a driver

There appear to be many social situations where you could be acting civilized but still manage to make some sort of faux-pas according to the etiquette test. For example, if I am out to dinner and I politely excuse myself from the table, how many incorrect ways are there for me to position my silverware or my napkin because it appears that there is only one right way to do it. I would like to think that a business deal wouldn’t hinge on the placement of my silverware or napkin but then again that sort of environment is foreign to me.

You are correct. Misplacing your silverware or napkin will not make or break the deal. Knowing the  rules let’s everyone know what is expecting of them. Imagine a society without

If there is food brought in for a meeting that is in a conference room for breakfast or lunch, when is it appropriate to take leftovers? Often the participants seem to be finished with the food, and it is just sitting there, so can I take it?

You should always ask the host first. If you are the host, you should let others know when it is appropriate to take what is left over. Typically it would

There appear to be many social situations where you could be acting civilized but still manage to make some sort of faux-pas according to the etiquette test. For example, if I am out to dinner and I politely excuse myself from the table, how many incorrect ways are there for me to position my silverware or my napkin because it appears that there is only one right way to do it. I would like to think that a business deal wouldn’t hinge on the placement of my silverware or napkin but then again that sort of environment is foreign to me.

You are correct. Misplacing your silverware or napkin will not make or break the deal. Knowing the  rules let’s everyone know what is expecting of them. Imagine a society without

When you go out to dinner with co-workers and you have different status levels of employees, should the most senior person sit in a specific place or does this not matter?

It definitely matters. You want to be sure that the correct person is sitting in the power seat. At a rectangle top, this would be the ends of the table.

When out with a client at a restaurant and trying to win an account versus nurturing an account, wouldn’t your behavior and actions differ? I would be more likely to have a different approach for each situation and have a difference in behavior. Please clarify the proper etiquette for these situations.

You are right correct in that you would approach it differently. How you would approach it would depend heavily on your normal behavior patterns. For example, if you have a

At a large table how does one know which water glass and bread dish is his or hers?

There is so much confusion around this issue. Try this concept and see how it can help you! Always have your drinks on your right and your bread on your

Who should initiate the business discussion when having a meal?

The rule is simple. The one who did the inviting should initiate the conversation of business. If you are hosting you should wait until after the order has been taken

If everyone is sitting at the table for dinner or a meeting and a new guest walks into the room, should everyone stand upon noticing the guest entering? Does it matter whether the guest is male or female?

When someone arrives at the table, it is the responsibility of the host to stand and greet the guest. Be sure to say their name, have a good firm handshake

Who should order first at a business dinner? The host or the guest?

The host should allow his or her guest to order first. My recommendation is to have the guest of honor order first. The server should take the lead from there.