Whether your company is preparing for a conference, a meeting with another company or potential clients, there are numerous aspects that must be covered for a successful and productive event of this type. Your conference room should be impeccable, your presentation flawless, but there is one more, almost crucial element that needs to be taken care of – food. When setting up a business meeting, it is of the utmost importance to demonstrate not only professionalism but hospitality as well. Your goal should be to exude professionalism but also to create a warm and productivity-enticing atmosphere, and the right food can help you achieve precisely that. In addition to making a good impression, food is a great productivity instigator as it is known that productivity levels tend to run low when working on an empty stomach. Therefore, providing a catered meal allows the meeting to flow more smoothly, not to mention that this act of hospitality and attentiveness will not go unnoticed by your clients or business partners. That being said, there is a proper time and manner in which to do this, and we have created a list of dos and don’ts for you to follow so everything goes smoothly, and hopefully with a sealed deal at the end.
Choose only the best
By best, of course, we mean the best possible food. First off, bear in mind the time of day the meeting is to take place and make proper choices regarding food accordingly – assess whether your food should resemble breakfast or lunch food more, or perhaps something in between. Opt for a variety of choices to show that you care about different preferences – include vegetarian and vegan foods, low-calorie food for the health-conscious attendees and be mindful of potential allergies certain people have such as peanuts and such, and avoid serving food that is too spicy, too salty or too sweet. Try to cater to every taste and preference in order to make the best impression. The food should by all means be delicious, but great presentation also goes a long way. So, when choosing a catering service, make sure you check out their portfolio and see how their food looks, not only tastes. Setting up a buffet is another great idea for smaller meetings as it allows your guests to choose their own food as well as food portion.
Timing is everything
Once you know the exact hour the meeting is to take place, plan for the food to arrive at the proper hour. If the food arrives too early, you run the risk of it going cold or bad. An even worse scenario is having the food delivered late – that will certainly not make a great impression. This is a matter of precision, and it is important that you inquire about good catering services in advance, and make sure that they deliver and set everything up just before your clients arrive. Having the food set up at the moment your clients arrive does not exactly do your company’s image a favor, so make it a priority to set everything in a timely manner.
Do not go overboard
Keep in mind that this is a business meeting, so do not go too far with the amount of food. The goal is to create the right atmosphere and make sure everyone has a delicious bite. Catered food serves the purpose of making your company look good and welcoming; your meeting should not aim towards turning into a feast, at least not until you seal the deal – then you can organize a full-blown celebration.
The sweet ending
When making arrangements with your catering service, ensure that a certain amount of desserts is included. Nothing puts a cherry on top of a great meeting like a sweet little something. In addition to that, always make sure that there is always enough fresh coffee and other refreshments. These little additions are here to ensure that everything goes swimmingly. Even if someone gets up on the wrong side of the bed – a bit of chocolate and a great cup of coffee have the power of putting everyone in a great mood.