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Dining etiquette for the professionally challenged

Lunch/Dinner meetings and interviews are a great way for employers and recruiters to see if you have what it takes to not only work for their company, but represent them in front of clients. Here are some tips to keep you in the know:

Be sure to sit up straight! Slouching down in your chair will give the employer or recruiter the impression that you don't want to be there, and don't care about what is going on.

Don't forget to chew with your mouth closed. This should be common sense, and will prevent you from coming off as gross or disgusting to the employer or recruiter.

Next, keep your elbows off of the table. In addition, if you need something that is far away, ask for it! Under no means should you reach for things across the table.

If you are eating soup, spoon the soup away from you to keep it from dripping. Then, bring the spoon to your mouth, instead of hunching over your bowl.

If you do make a mess, dab with your napkin to clean it up, do not wipe.

Below is a picture of a proper place setting. This demonstrates which utensils to use when eating a variety of different dishes. It is also useful if you are going to be hosting the employer or recruiter.

Last, but certainly not least, the No. 1 rule of dining etiquette is to follow your host's lead.

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