Kostenlos abonnieren

Werden Sie regelmäßig per E-Mail über neue Ausgaben der campuls informiert. Sie können Ihr kostenloses Abo jederzeit einfach online über den Abmeldelink im Newsletter kündigen.

Weitere Infos zu Datenschutz & Widerrufsrecht finden Sie hier.

Table etiquette for all occasions: The enjoyable business dinner at Hof University

Prepare for the job with good food: The Business Dinner of the Career Service at Hof University of Applied Sciences regularly offers the opportunity to learn the table etiquette and manners common in Germany, so that you are also prepared in the best possible way for this part of your later professional life. Maria Schürer and Johanna Franke from the Career Service tell in an interview with “Campuls-Digital” what you need to know.

Learning etiquette with pleasure- the Career Service’s business dinner; Image: Hof University of Applied Sciences;

Ms. Schürer, since when has the Business Dinner been held at Hof University of Applied Sciences?

“Our Business Dinner is one of the very first Career Service events. It has been offered since its founding in 2011 – at first only for international students, then later for mixed groups with the goal of bringing German and international students to the same table. Since 2021, Diana Mignano has also been involved in the organization and financing of the workshop format as coordinator of the project “With successful studies into the job market (MESIDA)”. Meanwhile, the Business Dinner takes place regularly, almost every semester, in English and/or German. Here, too, we mix both target groups.”

What was the original idea behind it?

“The basic idea was to prepare international students for the German job market during their studies. This includes learning about classic business etiquette. An important part of this business etiquette is “dining with manners”, for example at a business dinner. Here you quickly get practical practice when you get together in a restaurant in business attire, enjoy a 3-course meal and discuss the topics of business etiquette in a relaxed atmosphere.”

We’re just going to assume that now: Every student can eat properly. Where exactly is the added value – what is taught that can’t be learned in everyday life?

“Questions are explained that are definitely sometimes fraught with uncertainty, for example: Who goes first, who sits down first, how does ordering work, how does the handling of cutlery, glasses and napkin go, how much is tipped, etc. We also address the question of how to behave in difficult situations, e.g. in the event of complaints. Last but not least, it is also about how best to handle certain foods on the plate, e.g. potatoes, salad, soup, etc.

However, the Business Dinner is by no means only popular with our international students. Our German students also know that you can always make a good impression with modern manners – professionally, but also in your private life.”

Maria Schürer, Career Service
The seats in the Kastaniengarten restaurant are coveted and usually taken quickly; Image: Hof University of Applied Sciences;

Now you might say, you can find all that on YouTube, too…

“Exactly not. Of course, you could also read up on the rules of etiquette, e.g. in the book by our etiquette trainer Cindy Seifert, which, by the way, can also be found in the Career Services semester apparatus. But practicing the rules practically and being able to ask questions is a great advantage. It’s not about following the rules all the time, but knowing the rules of etiquette, including being able to consciously break them once in a while if necessary.”

Ms. Franke, it has already been mentioned: the dinner is accompanied by a professional etiquette trainer. How can one imagine their work on site?

“Cindy Seifert has been our etiquette trainer from the very beginning and is a real stroke of luck! She leads through the event with a lot of charm and wit and can answer any question about the etiquette topic. She plays the role of hostess and with her, etiquette is anything but stiff! She even provides feedback on business outfits when requested…”

What’s on offer at Kastaniengarten?

“The Kastaniengarten restaurant is a wonderful venue for the business dinner and incidentally one of the best restaurants in Hofer Land. There is very, very tasty food in the form of a 3-course menu and a great, but discreet service – just so that the basic conditions for this event are perfectly met.”

The team behind the business dinner (from left): Maria Schürer, Diana Mignano and Johanna Franke;
Image: Hof University of Applied Sciences;

It’s not normally available for 18 EUR. How is the dinner financed?

The students only pay a small part of the menu price, the rest is financed from the Career Service budget or from project funds like MESIDA.”

It all sounds really swell. When are the next dates and when can people sign up?

“The next Business Dinners will take place in the summer semester of 2023, on June 15 in German and June 22 in English. We will announce the registration dates by email. We can really say: it’s worth it!”

Thank you very much for the interview!

Rainer Krauß

Weitere Themen