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Top Tips: Corporate Entertaining

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E-mail: Judith Bowman

Top Tips: Corporate Entertaining

These simple tips will help you successfully host and navigate any dinner with your boss or manager, an important client, a co-worker, and even your family. Consider the proper protocol involved in all aspects of wining and dining!
  1. The host makes the reservation after quietly learning guest restaurant preference.

  2. The host pre-arranges handling the check, so it NEVER arrives at the table, avoiding any awkwardness.

  3. The host defers to the person of honour to go first and follow the maitre d’, regardless of gender; there are no gender rules in business!

  4. The host arrives in advance to prepare for and, coordinate several things including: learning names of everyone - servers, the captain, maitre d'., etc, and, know where everything including restrooms, etc., are in order to give directions, appear knowledgeable, authoritative and, remain in control. Select preferred table, identify seating arrangements and review order of ordering with server – all, in advance of guest arrival.

  5. Sitting, seating and, the ordering process should be controlled. The host should suggest everyone look at their menu early, to get ordering out of the way, in order to honour guest time constraints and, not be interrupted during discourse. *A good idea for hosts to mention a few specific items on the menu, which vary in price, so guests feel comfortable ordering whatever they would like.

  6. It is appropriate to order course for course with your guest, regardless of your own appetite; not necessary to order glass for glass when it comes to alcoholic beverages, however.

  7. It is gracious to "defer the honour" of ordering wine to that individual in your party you know is a particular wine connoisseur.

  8. The person of honour is seated to the host’s right.

  9. Order of Ordering: the person of honour orders first, ladies next, followed by gentlemen, and finally the host should order. *This order should be reviewed in advance, with wait-staff.

  10. No one's plate should be removed until everyone at the table is finished; this, also controlled by the host.

  11. The host is responsible for initiating everything including sitting (enter and exit from the chair's right), removing the napkin from the table, lifting their glass for a toast (there are two types of toasts), picking up utensils to begin each course, etc.

  12. At the conclusion of the meal, the host should quietly excuse themselves (no need to say where they are going) to review and sign the check, add gratuity. This eliminates any awkwardness regarding who is going to pay - even though “the check” is a host responsibility. Taking care of the check in advance makes you look authoritative, keeps you in control and, those in the hospitality industry are trained to acknowledge and respond, accordingly. You and your guests will be treated royally.

  13. Thank everyone for coming, and walk guests to door - actually outside the door and, know you have hosted and, executed a flawless event.
Tel: 508-888-7800   E-mail: Judith Bowman
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