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Mixing Business with Meals & Parties

The main goal of mixing business with meals, parties, social events ..etc. is to get people to know each other better, nurture personal trust and confidence in others whether its between staff and customers or staff of other companies for companies working and co-operating together on projects or a strategic alliance or even to build better teams within the same company. From staff breakfasts to working lunches to cocktail receptions for clients, being in your best business form at any event really pays off. The following general guidelines will help:


Confirm or decline promptly
Its good etiquette to respond to any invitation promptly whether you can make it or not . By timely responding to invitations others won't have to change last minute plans of reservations and any other logistics involved.


Dont' Show up late
Naturally, a great start of an event begins with your punctuality, if you arrive late you give a rude and unprofessional impression of yourself and your company. If you have to be late due to unforeseen circumstances then you shouldn't be late more than 10 - 15 minutes maximum Otherwise you need to phone the host in advance and inform them politely that you will not be able to make it on time and state the reasons. 


Dress appropriately for the event
Find out from the host if you're not sure about the appropriate dress code (if any) for the event . Dressing appropriately shows respect and gives a positive image of you and your company.


Don't Bring an uninvited guest
Bringing someone uninvited certainly can stand out in some events needless to say some of the complications it can cause to the host of the events ( food, # of Chairs ..etc.). It is generally advised to avoid bringing uninvited guests along. 


Be friendly and cheerful
Introduce yourself to as many people as you can, be friendly and open to conversation. Networking in these events and getting to know more people can be very helpful in your career. Sometimes one conversation with one person can enlighten you in some way or give you an idea that may be life changing.


Keep up a Positive conversation
Keep conversations within the main interests that most people share, needless to say not getting into any confidential corporate information. Politics and religion related topics should be kept to a minimum or avoided altogether if possible.


Stay sober please
Its highly advised to use any alcoholic beverages in all business and social situations in moderation. Specially within a business event nobody wants to deal with a drunk making a scene.


Give Positive feedback 
Do not complain about location or venue to everyone around and start making negative comments and become a source of negativity towards the event. If you see something wrong notify the host/the person responsible for organizing the event discreetly.


Know when to Leave
You should be sensitive to know when is the best time to leave, generally when about half the guests start to leave is a good time.  Try not to be the first or the last one to leave.


Follow up with a thank-you note, e-mail, card, or letter of appreciation.


For more on business etiquette, check out our Business Etiquette instant download training package.