Ethics of Dining Interview

If you are a job seeker, donít be surprised if you are called for an unconventional dining interview. Dining interviews are trending hugely these days, but not many interviewees are aware of the dos and doníts. Although most interviews can be stressful for any candidate, dining interviews pose a bigger challenge any day. They test much more than just your professional skills and hence you need to understand all the aspects of dining interviews before you master them through practice.

Why interviewers conduct dining interviews?

Dining interviews are a growing trend due to several reasons. The intension of the interviewer is to conduct the process in a more relaxed and comfortable environment so that the candidate is at ease. However, you should always bear in mind that being invited for dining doesnít change the equation between a interviewer and interviewee. You are still expected to conduct yourself in a professional manner.

Secondly, a dining interview it gives the interviewer a perfect setting to judge your behavioral and social etiquettes. Thirdly it also helps them to judge your interpersonal skills, prioritization and dining etiquettes. It gives them an opportunity to see what you can become in future if given the right opportunities. Use this opportunity wisely!


Since you are being judged continuously by the interviewer, it is very important to be certain of things to should do and etiquettes you should follow. Letís get started with what should you wear. You must again keep in mind that although it is being conducted in a less formal environment, it is as formal as an office interview, so be dressed formally. Grays and blues can be a good choice for breakfasts and lunch whereas grays and blacks are preferable for dinners. Women should wear minimal jewelry.

Well manicured hands always create a good impression. Unlike an office interview that happens behind desks, dining interviews take place on open tables where your hand would be more in action and visible. Additionally, well manicured hands are proof of the fact that you give importance to personal grooming. The interviewer would be happy to know this because when you represent the company in conferences or congregations, grooming is extremely important.

Participate actively in the conversation at the dinner table. Keep in mind that your prime objective is getting through the interview and not the menu. However knowing how to place a good order can be an added advantage. You need to follow other dinner etiquettes like knowing how to place your cutlery, using the napkin and eating sophisticatedly.


It is always more important to know what not to do than to know what to do.

Firstly, never sit until asked.

Secondly, you should also keep in mind not make sound while eating and not to talk, even if it is to respond to the interviewerís questions, while munching on food. Never accept drinks offered during the interview process. Decline politely. This will show that you are ethical and do not indulge in pleasure during business. Also do not order dishes which can get messy while eating. Keep it simple and sober.

A little practice of these tips can help you through any dining interview. All the best!

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