Issue #16

Tel: 780.472.0767

Style & Substance Secrets


The resource for business professionals to improve credibility, relationships and bottom line, through image, etiquette, dining and social skills advice.


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- Dining For Success

- Looking the Part

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Inside This Issue


- Holiday Party Tips


Dear Joanne & Terry Q & A:


- Table Manners


- Quotable Quotes


- What's New With Us


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About Style for Success
Business Image and Etiquette Consultants, Speakers, Trainers


Joanne Blake & Terry Pithers can help your organization and your people improve their personal image and social skills to build credibility and inspire stronger business relationships.


Specializing in business dress, demeanor & dining, we add enjoyable, unique, profitable content to your training, conferences, retreats and in-house seminars.


View our business brochure (pdf)



T'is the Season  -  The Holiday Party Tips Issue



Remember the office party where ...

The one where Pete got drunk and insulted the boss’s wife
or the one where Brad and Angelina were discovered in the photocopier room “reproducing something ”
or what about the one where ...


Why are the most memorable holiday office parties always the ones where something really embarrassing happens?


To make the holiday season run smoothly,
this issue is packed with office party tips

  • How to organize a great party
    (as opposed to an embarrassing one)
  • How to survive an office party
    (without having to move and assume a new identity)
  • What to wear to the holiday party
    (what the heck does "holiday attire" mean)
  • What to give - memorable gift ideas


Tips to organize a great party

Check out this timely newspaper article (pdf) we were just featured in - MAKING YOUR OFFICE PARTY MERRY - Tips on getting more mingling at the gala and avoiding boorish booze-ups


Survival tips for party goers

Click here for - TIPS TO SURVIVE THE OFFICE PARTY - with your career and marriage still intact


But I don't know what to wear

We help you look good at the party and decipher the dress code on the invite. Click here for SPECIAL EVENT DRESS   - Tips and Guidelines


What should I get them

Click here for great ideas to personalize client gifts

GIFTS THAT MEAN SOMETHING - and don't cost a fortune


Just what you always wanted ... a donkey

We got you something nice for Christmas.
How does a donkey sound? Not what you wanted?

Too bad it's already in the mail, and boy did we have a hard time getting it into the mailbox.

Click here to see a picture of your donkey and other gifts we purchased.


Don't worry it's not coming to your mailbox.

To say thanks to our clients and readers, this year through Oxfam on your behalf we sponsored some gifts including girls’ education, a peace donation and a donkey for a needy family. 


Season's greetings and wishes for a peaceful planet.

Joanne and Terry

Q&A - Business Etiquette, Dress & Table Manners Advice

Contact us with your questions.


Dining Question:


Q:  Dress him up but can't take him anywhere?


My husband's table manners embarrass me. I cringe when I watch him grip his knife and fork. I can't seem to get him to change. It's becoming a sore point in our relationship. With the holiday dinner invitations coming up, can you help?


- Mary G. Ontherocs



These days at least 60% of the diners we see out there have unusual ways of using their cutlery. Unfortunately people who look awkward at the table aren't even aware that they are doing anything wrong. But the people like yourself, who know the proper etiquette, certainly notice.


Many spouses share with us that their partners don't seem able to follow their example and learn by osmosis (ain't that the truth in other things as well). Don't let it ruin your relationship and never nag or correct them in front of others.


Use some humor to take the edge off reminding him. Try a fun descriptor of his awkward grip, such as the prison grip or the air passenger grip. When he does it and you aren't dining with others, rib him gently with "You're using that prison grip again".


To reinforce this, you might try giving him our online dining training as an early Christmas gift. Watch it together (tell him it's a comedy). It has some funny examples and it visually shows what to do and not to do.


View a Free Demo of Dining for Success Online Training.

The easiest way to raise the (salad) bar in your organization or in your partner.

Click here to log in for a 15 minute free demo

Enter user id - diningsample

and password - sampleit


Individual online sales are available at

For discounts or intranet use for organizations contact us

Quotable Quotes:


What I don't like about office Christmas parties is looking for a job the next day."

- Phyllis Diller

Keep a good heart. That's the most important thing in life.
It's not how much money you make or what you can acquire.
The art of it is to keep a good heart.
- Joni Mitchell



Better than the yuletime log fire on TV:


Joanne and Terry will appear numerous times over the holiday season on Shaw Cable, talking about holiday entertaining.



Terry's Always Dining Out


Once again Terry in conjuction with the hardworking executive of the University of Alberta Cooperative Education Students Association put on their 4th Annual Top of Class Business Etiquette Dinner.

It was a lot of fun and a great success with the event selling out to 150 business students in very short order.  This year corporate sponsors from the community attended as well.




Our Dining For Success Program is Being Used by MBA Programs in the United States. 
Here's what they have to say:


"An important workplace skill that seems to be missing for many younger professionals is business etiquette.  Therefore, we have committed to providing enhancements to our MBA program that give our graduates an edge in their careers.  The Dining For Success program allows us to provide critical training in an engaging cost-effective manner that our MBA students enjoy and value." 


- MBA Program Director

College of Business and Public Administration

Eastern Washington University




British Columbia Here We Come!

February Public Seminars in Sidney and other locations on Vancouver Island.


Presenting & Expressing Yourself with Confidence & Style

100% of recent attendees said they would recommend these sessions to others.


Staging You - Presenting and Expressing Yourself with Confidence and Style

Focused for Real-Estate Professionals but anyone's career will benefit from these sessions


Date: Wed. Feb. 25th, 2009

3 workshops in one day

  • Savvy Networking - The Art of Mixing & Mingling
  • Dining For Success – Making a Positive Impression When Business Dining (includes lunch)
  • Looking the Part:  Creating Your Positive Personal Brand (For men and women)

Cost: $250 per session or $600 for the full day.
Early Bird - Register for the full workshop day before January 25th and save $100!


Click here to register for any or all of the day's sessions.


Click here for pdf brochure of the public seminars



All About You - Presenting and Expressing Yourself with Confidence and Style

3 workshops in one day (as above)

Date: Tentatively Sat. Feb. 28th, 2009

Location: in the Parksville/Nanaimo area


For more info on our Public Seminars contact us


Looking for entertaining and empowering presentations with a difference for your next conference or retreat?

Business dress, etiquette, networking, dining and meeting skills.

Check out our website and give us a call.


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All contents Copyright ©2008, Style for Success Inc. - Terry Pithers and Joanne Blake, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved worldwide. Duplication or reprints only with approved credits as indicated below.


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This article was provided by Terry Pithers and Joanne Blake, business dining, image and etiquette experts, speakers and creators of the Dining for Success Online Training Program.
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Copyright © 2008 Style for Success Inc. All rights reserved worldwide.

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