Hosting a business lunch can be more stressful than it really is, and it gets even tenser when you have to invite special guests who might make or break your next business endeavor. Though, if you follow simple rules, it will be possible survive a business lunch meeting without having to lose any nerves or business partners.
Never Take Your Seat without the Party Arriving
Not only is it rude and insulting to take your seat before everyone has arrived, but it will show that your business is inconsiderate and that you cannot hold your place when most expected. You must always wait for your party to arrive, and only then are you allowed to sit down with them. Though, always wait for them to take their seats first, as you are the host, you need to make sure that they feel comfortable and welcome.
Do Not Stray From the Set Goals
Small talk is allowed only after business has been concluded, because it is a business meeting after all. Try to stay on track with the set agenda so that you can conclude your business moves first, enjoy a nice meal, and sign any necessary papers. Moreover, it will be important that you politely nudge your partners back to the topic if you notice that they are going away from topic. Even if they are your guests, they still need to respect proper business lunch etiquette.
Never Order Anything Messy
One of the worst things you could do is to order something messy that will take a lot of napkins to clean yourself after, or that you do not use any utensils at all. It would be advisable that you do not go hungry to the lunch at all, so that you can eat something light, and conclude the meeting as soon as possible, so that both you and your party can continue with work. Remember to help out guests if they are unsure what to take, but never show them anything that might be hard to eat.
Be Prepared For Any Situation
You should plan ahead and make sure to make a checklist you can follow, so that you avoid making small mistakes that could cost your business not only money, but reputation as well. Even though some things are mostly common sense, there are a number of things you should not do, so that you do not embarrass yourself and your business as well. Be especially careful with etiquette when you are receiving guests from abroad, so that you respect their cultural preferences as well.
Lighten the Mood with a Drink
Although it is best to avoid drinking a lot during a business lunch meeting, you should not be afraid to have a simple drink. It will be helpful in sealing the deal, and it can also lighten the mood, so that your guests feel comfortable. However, make sure to offer only the best for your guests, which is why you should take a look in the liquor specials menu. However, make sure that you are not overdoing it, because you are only drinking to celebrate, not to get drunk.
Wrapping up a business lunch means that you should lean in and get the check, because you were the host. Besides this, make sure to pay attention to proper etiquette and that you show respect for your guests. Be sure to mind your manners so that you can impress. After all, a nice meal with a good drink with a signed business agreement is the best way to end a meeting.