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The Boston Globe

Business

Etiquette at work

A few tricks for ensuring a proper place setting

How do mnemonics help decode table settings? Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary defines mnemonics as a technique of improving the memory. When I teach business dining etiquette, I am always fascinated by how many people want to know how to decode a table setting. Whether for a simple or multiple course meal, at home or a restaurant, the way the table is set follows a norm.

Your fork, knife, spoon, glassware, and plate are always in the same place. Imagine how confusing it would be if the table were set differently each time. Knowing the standard eliminates confusion and allows you to proceed through your meal or set your table with confidence.

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