What do you do if a piece of food slides off your plate at a business luncheon? Is alcohol ever acceptable? Is it okay to take home a doggie bag?
The answers to these questions could be found at UW-Green Bay Career Services’ Dine Like a Professional event Monday, March 2 at the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts. The luncheon allowed students, faculty, and community members to network and enjoy a meal together.
The two-hour luncheon was led by “Chef Jeff” Igel, the chair of the Culinary Arts and Hospitality Department at Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton. Igel led the luncheon in spring 2013, and was asked to return after rave reviews.
“Etiquette is a set of rules we live by,” Igel said, “Manners are the way we put those rules into effect.”
The professional chef began teaching etiquette out of necessity 16 years ago. According to Igel, his students had no clue how to navigate the complexities of a business luncheon.
Along with providing tips and tricks to help attendees navigate the world of networking luncheons, the approximately 120 attendees, half of which were students, were treated to a delicious meal courtesy of The Marq.
Between the humor and tips was one overarching message: Etiquette is always about others, not yourself.
“It’s all about the perception of your personal choices,” said Igel.
Igel stressed that those in a business luncheon should remain aware that everything they do, from the beverage they drink, to the amount of leftover food on their plate, is on display for the others to judge.
With the meal etiquette, Igel provided etiquette advice for all types of business settings, including at the office, while communicating, and while networking.
But the luncheon wasn’t solely focused on etiquette. Career Services used the opportunity to award the Recruitment Partner of the Year award to ACUITY. Acuity was honored for its exceptional commitment to Career Services’ mission — providing learning opportunities for students in their field of study, supporting professional growth and career development of students, and active recruitment of UW-Green Bay students and graduates. The longtime partner has represented at 35 job fairs since 1997. At present, about 40 UW-Green Bay alumni work at ACUITY, with at least four more students joining the organization after spring graduation. (Pictured below from ACUITY are from left to right: Amanda Gebert, Haley Lindstrom, Tracy Wusterbarth, Jordan Lindstrom and Rebecca Flipse.)
Igel closed the luncheon by stressing the importance of finding something in life that you are passionate about and committing to it.
“You make a living by what you get,” he said, “You make a life by what you give.”
The luncheon was one in a series of events held by Career Services to prepare students, especially graduating seniors, for career experiences. The lunch was followed on Wednesday, March 4 by the Spring Job and Internship Fair, which brought more than 80 employers to campus to recruit students, as well as a LinkedIn Photo Booth. More information on future Career Services events can be found here.
By the way, the answers to the questions posed in paragraph one, above? What do you do if a piece of food slides off your plate at a business luncheon? Discreetly place it back on the plate. Is alcohol ever acceptable? With dinner, in moderation, yes, but it will never hurt you if you don’t consume it. Is it okay to take home a doggie bag? No.