You never get a second chance to make a first impression! When taking a client or business associate out for a meal, you should always have proper etiquette on your mind. Etiquette, along with professionalism, will build a strong relationship with your client and may even aid in your sales with their company.
Here are some tips to make sure your client outing is successful and professional:
- Always make a reservation – use both your name and your company name, as you do not know which name your guest will ask for at the reception desk.
- Plan to arrive 15 minutes early, so you are there to greet them.
- If there is more than one guest, do not sit between them or it will be like a tennis match during the meal, with you looking right, then left, then right.A
- Always stand when a new guest arrives.
- Turn off your cell phone.
- Bring writing materials – using a scrap of paper or a napkin is tacky and indicates you did not expect to do business. And it is tacky to ask for a pen.
- Use proper posture at the table and do not lean on your elbows.
- Do not point, it is considered rude. Especially the one finger point.
- If you drop your napkin on the floor, it should be left there and a new napkin requested from your server. If you drop a utensil, you can pick it up if it is within reach, but request a new one from your server.
- Place your napkin back on the table only when everyone is leaving. The napkin should not be left on the chair.
Labels: client, etiquette, guest, meetings, outings, relationships, tips