Decorum calls for us to observe some behavior towards each other in our day to day social and official life. Staying within the flexible bounds of decorum gives relationships a chance to grow as well as giving one a chance to present oneself with authority and confidence in all areas of your personal and professional life.

    There are not many written down rules on etiquette as it is normally instilled in the upbringing and social interactions as good behavior. A time there is only a thin line between the expected good behavior and bad or rude behavior. We explore opinions on this interesting topic that most people are still grappling with to get answers.

    It’s important to remember that eating a meal is not the sole reason why a host invites you to the table for lunch but depending on the relationship between you, the host wants to enjoy your company. There are no hard rules on how long to stay after sharing a meal but an hour should be enough based on the choice of lunch, and not dinner or spending a weekend together.

    An hour or two is more than enough for lunch and conversation. Don’t pass this limit unless the host keeps you actively occupied with important conversation (not small talk) or assigns a task they need you to help with

    More often than not, we have lunch together due to overstretched schedules that won’t allow us to spend much time together and this calls for the incorporation of a couple of other things to observe when meeting up for lunch. The relationship between you and the host greatly determines the dos and don’ts. For instance, if your closest friend whom you talk to hours on end is your host, then little will be expected here and how long you stay after the meal will be determined by how much time you have.

    On the other hand, if a business associate is your host, so much has to be observed and good time management skills executed in a relaxed manner. You will also need to consider and carefully pick topics to talk about during the meal without spoiling the mood. Remember this could spoil future invitations too.

    The Dos and Don’ts when Invited for Lunch

    Here are the top things to consider when invited for lunch and you don’t want to be a disappointment.

    Keep time

    You already have limited time to work with here and it can be very rude to keep your host waiting, only for you to turn up and have a hurried meal full of excuses and explanations. Always remember that your host wanted to enjoy time and a meal with you. Allow yourselves enough time to get to your next schedule.

    Be clear about how much time you have in advance

    At the point of accepting the invitation indicate your visit duration. Do not make assumptions or be vague so you allow both of you to be comfortable and relaxed through the visit. Always remember that if you made it clear that you have to eat and run and your host agreed to it then doing that is perfectly in order.

    Phone etiquette

    Focus more on being in the present and give the host your undivided attention. Spending most of the time buried on the phone will make your host feel like they are boring you or you feel there is another place you’d rather be.

    Check this too: What Can I Do Instead of a Birthday Party?

    Show Some Gratitude

    Thank your host for the invite immediately you meet and later on for the meal, their time and hospitality. Give a compliment on the meal and give your host an invitation to lunch as well.

    Cues to Look out for from Your Host

    No matter how good you are, it is always better to get your cues from your host. Knowing some cues that hint on its time to wrap things up is a good way to avoid overstaying your welcome. The top two cues to look out for are:

    Quick Glances on the Clock or Watch

    It’s time to start leaving when you see your host checking time after every 15 seconds. This is an indicator that they’ve got less time on their side so it would be polite if you let them attend to other matters.

    Cleaning up the Table

    When the host thinks you’ve had enough of the meal and time they will start clearing up. Take this as a cue and prepare to leave. The host might as well start to thank you for coming, which could also be another cool cue to look out for.

    Check this too: How Long to Stay When Invited for Dinner