Article: Brooks Thompson Dishes to Tech COB on Etiquette

Apr 4, 2019 | Business, Engagement

Note: This article appeared in the Ruston Daily Leader on March 29, 2019.
Written by Kacey Richard

Louisiana Tech University business students were treated to a four-course meal and crash course in etiquette this week.

The College of Business held its third annual Etiquette Dinner at Davison Athletic Complex Wednesday night.

The popularity of the dinner has nearly doubled in the last year.

College of Business Director of Communications LeAnn Waldroup said the number went from 160 students in attendance in 2018 to 235 students this year.

This was the second year the department hosted Beverly Brooks Thompson of Brooks Thompson Consulting, from Baton Rouge, as the event speaker.

“Our Senior Director of Development, Mary Susan Britt, saw Beverly speak and knew we had to get her to come to Tech.”

Waldroup said the students enjoyed Brooks Thompson’s presentation so much last year they knew they had to lock her in again.

Brooks Thompson’s background in career services at Louisiana State University and her philanthropic consulting firm have given her many years of etiquette expertise.

She is one of LSU’s most prolific fundraisers.

“I think it is very important for people interviewing to know what they don’t know,” she said.
“The most common mistakes made is not asking enough questions. I want students to feel empowered that it is okay to ask questions leading up to the interview like what is the dress code, where should I park.”

She said many students entering the professional world have not prepared for interviews in a dining setting.

“I used to work in career services and I noticed that students were not getting jobs because of the lack of soft skills,” she said “we don’t teach the [etiquette] tools like we used to. We don’t sit down for dinner every night together anymore.”

Senior marketing major Somer Miller said the event showed her how much etiquette could impact her future, either on an interview or with a simple introduction.

“Before I came to the event, I wasn’t aware of everything that went into table etiquette,” she said. “Now I feel much more prepared to go into an interview with someone.”

College of Business Dean Chris Martin said 95% of Tech’s COB undergraduates place in the career or graduate program of their choice, and he consistently hears from employers that his students are well prepared for the workforce.

“Programming like our annual Etiquette Dinner provides our students with a valuable professional development experience that will set them apart when applying for jobs and internships,” he said.

Brooks Thompson has etiquette materials on her website Readers can download one-pagers on business etiquette, power business dining and dressing for success.