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Business Coffee Meeting Etiquette

Business Coffee Meeting Etiquette

Scheduling a quick meeting or office work session at a coffee shop has become very popular in today’s business world.

Meeting over a cup of coffee is a great way to change the normal environment, while sparking caffeinated creativity. Because most professionals are pressed for time, a 30-minute coffee shop meeting provides a practical alternative to a lunch gathering, which may take several hours.

There are a few things to consider when inviting others for a coffee meeting –

1~ Location. When inviting a client for coffee, always keep their location in mind. Make sure to pick a place that is close and convenient to them, eliminating their stress about the gathering.

2~ Go Solo. If your office is a shared work space, where everyone has designated places for brainstorming and individual work – your boss probably wouldn’t mind if you went to a local coffee shop for a change of pace. Always let colleagues know before you leave, and be sure to give a designated time when you will return.

3~ Pay the Bill. If you were the one to schedule the coffee business meeting, it’s your responsibility to cover the cost of your guests beverages.

4~ Find the Best Location. A casual meeting at a busy coffee chain store is fine, but if you have several people to talk to, or a presentation to make, find a quieter place – or a location that offers a private back room option. A busy place, full of noise, only makes distractions and the chance that your message won’t be heard.

5~ Don’t Limit. Don’t limit your out-of-office meetings to only coffee shops. Local bakeries, delis and dessert shops also make great sites. The whole idea is to promote creativity by leaving the normal work environment.

6~ Budget Friendly Meeting. Inviting others for coffee is the perfect solution for those young executives that want to expand their professional circle, but are also on a tight budget. These meetings will open doors, while costing only a fraction of what hosting an expensive business lunch would be.

7~ Great Surprises. If you are stopping at a client’s office for a meeting, stopping at a coffee shop on the way is a great gesture that will not soon be forgotten.

8~ Try Catering. Instead of ordering a large lunch for a deli or sandwich shop, if you must hold your meeting at the office, try calling the closest coffee shop to see if they offer catering services. Colleagues will enjoy a morning business meeting much more when specialty coffees and pastries are offered.

9~ Support Local. If you work in a busy downtown area where there are coffee shops on every corner, be sure to give your business to the locally owned stores instead of the chain locations. Getting to know a local owner is the perfect way to start a relationship with someone that can offer special attention when meeting with clients. Smaller shops tend to offer more personalized attention, and even special discounts.

Don’t limit your office meetings to the confinement of the office. Offer clients, colleagues and other executives to enjoy a cup of coffee with you and open doors to new creativity and business options.

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