Diplomatic activities extend beyond negotiating at meetings, attending sessions, and signing agreements. Diplomats represent their state through their behaviour even beyond working hours at the embassy. For this reason, this programme primarily aims at providing foreign service staff with the knowledge and skills that are necessary for them to effectively represent their country outside of direct job-related functions. Furthermore, it may be useful for more experienced diplomats and other leaders who are interested in improving their intercultural hospitality and formal etiquette skills taught by specialists in culture & society, food and culture, and dining etiquette.
The service-oriented 'new diplomat' can communicate with a wide range of state and non-state actors; is open-minded, flexible, and demonstrates natural authority by creating an atmosphere of comfort and trust. Hospitality skills lie at the centre of this approach.
This programme goes beyond traditional training of direct profession-related skills while at the same time addressing aspects of the diplomat’s activities, such as attending formal dinners, offering, presenting, and receiving gifts under different cultural requirements, appreciating cultural and religious etiquette during social events, and hosting important guests.
The programme’s overall objective is to provide foreign service officials and business leaders with the necessary knowledge base and confidence that will permit them to attend and host formal and informal social events in an intercultural setting by:
- Enhancing their understanding of formal etiquette around the table;
- Allowing them to anticipate and adhere to cultural and religious hospitality and other customs;
- Teaching them how to contribute to the ambience of a social event by correctly presenting and describing various foods and beverages.
By enhancing beneficiaries’ knowledge base and skillset in hosting and attending formal social events, UNITAR will provide diplomats with the opportunity to practice what is known as "Charismatic Leadership" in leadership theory (Weber, 1922; House, 1976; House & Howell, 1992), namely a set of behaviours which are increasingly relevant in the relationship-oriented diplomatic and business communities.
By the end of the programme, participants will be able to:
- Exhibit exceptional social skills that reach beyond profession-related competencies;
- Apply the correct etiquette at formal social settings;
- Avoid the main universal and culture-specific faux-pas for various hospitality settings;
- Identify the main qualities and attributes of various foods and beverages;
- Synthesise all the above to their duties as representatives of their state
Module 1: Table Etiquette
Implemented as a one-day e-workshop
- What goes where?: Basic table presentation;
- “From Soup to Nuts”: Introducing multiple course-meal etiquette;
- What is this for? Using the correct cutlery and the correct glass;
- Communicating with your plate: Cutlery placement etiquette
Module 2: Effective Hospitality in an Intercultural Setting
Implemented as a two-day e-workshop
- Food and culture;
- Dietary Specifics;
- Religious requirements;
- Cultural specifics;
- Main religious holidays and cultural holidays;
- Symbolism and exchange of gifts in different cultures;
- Guest-host power dynamics in different cultures;
- Culture-specific and international faux-pas.
- Conclusion: Intercultural networking skills
Module 3: Food and Beverage Pairing
Implemented as a two-day e-workshop and one face-to-face event
- Beverage Knowledge
- Tea and Coffee Culture (Optional: in place of "Wine and Cheese Pairing")
- Choosing a wine
- Describing and presenting a wine
- Presenting a cheese plate
- Typical cheese pairings
- Wine and cheese pairing (Optional)
The programme orients around social events and relationship-building and will include interactive simulation exercises, group work, discussions and quizzes in order to enhance participants' application of the key social skills taught in the programme.
Modules 1-3 will be offered through a series of five e-workshops, hosted by renowned International Hospitality experts and pracitioners.
The programme will end with the "Wine and Cheese Pairing" face-to-face event, in which participants will discover the different ways of describing, choosing, and pairing the correct food with the right beverage while enhancing their professional network.
This workshop is optional and can be ommitted or replaced by the "Tea and Coffee Culture" workshop.
This course targets any diplomatic officials and business leaders who are directly involved in international activities and who wish to enhance their ability to demonstrate natural charismatic leadership by reinforcing their relationship-building and hospitality skills.
The course will equally benefit anyone interested in intercultural communication from a practical perspective.