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Wharton Women hosted its annual etiquette dinner at Bistro St. Tropez for "An Evening in Paris" on Thursday night.

Credit: Tiffany Yau

Eating is serious business.

On April 9, Wharton Women hosted its annual etiquette dinner at Bistro St. Tropez for "An Evening in Paris," where keynote speaker “The Etiquette Lady” Elaine Swann shared her knowledge on dining etiquette.

Swann has talked etiquette on The Today Show, NBC and CNN, among other news outlets.

“We provide really cool etiquette dinner speakers every year who can shed light on how to best present themselves and keep poise in different types of positions,” Vice President of Finance of Wharton Women and Wharton junior Alice King said. “It’s Wharton Women’s mission to foster personal and professional development; etiquette is such an important part of that step.”

Wharton Women President and Wharton junior Amanda Russoniello emphasized etiquette as an important tool in the business world.

“When you’re at a business deal, you don’t want the first thing people notice about you [to be] the way you’re eating; it should be about you as a person as an individual," they said. "Once you have it down, people will see you as an individual and for your strengths. With these fundamental skills, you’ll be able to show off yourself at a business dinner, which is really important.”

Throughout the event, Swann guided Wharton Women in an interactive dinner and stressed the importance of etiquette and having the right soft skills in the professional world.

“People do business with people they like; you’re not likable if you’re not conducting yourself in the proper manner or if you’re lacking self confidence and self-assuredness,” Swann said. “That’s what I do. I help people develop that self confidence that will take them really far in the business arena.”

Swann also highlighted the magnitude of etiquette, as it goes far beyond our tables and into our everyday worlds.

“When you take the principles that I have and apply them to your everyday life, you can see etiquette in everything you do whether it’s a business deal or interacting with your family and friends. It’s not something that you should be able to turn off and on. It’s more of a lifestyle. Take this and use it as your lifestyle,” she said. 

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