Business dinners are an integral part of the relationship-building process. They can also be a big waste of time and money if not conducted correctly. This article will break down some basic guidelines for working business dinner with your clients, providing you with tips for making their dining experience as productive and effective as possible.
Make sure that you’re always prepared with a menu that suits both clients’ needs.
Another critical thing to remember is that those business dinners are not just about eating but also about the conversation. The only way to create a productive and effective business dinner with clients is to have a purpose for the meal.
Think carefully about who you want to invite to the business meal. Bringing along more people leads to more entertainment, but it also creates a situation where there’s less focus on each person. It’s a question of quantity vs. quality — make sure that your guests aren’t too distracting! If you’re out with coworkers, try to get some alone time with your boss.
Before the meal starts, ask your guests how they’re feeling and if they have anything new going on in their lives outside of the company. This can create good communication later in the meal and provide some spontaneity.
Please pay attention to what your guests are eating to get an idea of their taste preferences. If someone is ordering a steak, it might be good to request something else. Notice if anyone orders alcohol and tries to order the same drink (or something similar). If you’re worried about ordering the wrong thing, ask the server for help.
Order drinks you’d like to drink instead of trying to impress everyone with the table’s big business dinner game of “What are the wine and cocktail pairings for this course?” Try to order something that matches the dishes on your plate to avoid ordering a ton of food in one sitting. And when it comes time for dessert, order what you like.
Before leaving for your business dinner, set aside time to make notes on what you learned, who you talked with, and have any follow-up questions ready to ask. This will help you make the most of whatever time you have left. It is also important to note that having cigars at your meal is fine if that’s the norm in your company.
At the end of the business meal, ask for some feedback from your guests. This can help you get a better feeling for what they like and don’t like. You might even be able to ask for an idea that could do some good for your company (and maybe your career).
The important thing is to remember that business dinners are about the conversation. If you can get a little bit of fun and creativity thrown in there, all the better!
Since a business dinner is both a form of friendly entertainment and a means of establishing or maintaining a business relationship, it should be conducted with integrity and respect. There’s no right or wrong way to have a business dinner, and the only way to know what works best is to give it a try.