Business Dinner Event Planning
Business dinners are something that many people look forward to with mixed emotions. They are a wonderful chance to celebrate the end of a successful quarter, a company milestone, or the retirement of a valued team member. However, many business dinners are boring and not remembered fondly. With our advice you can change the way your company views business dinners. We offer tips that will help you make your next business dinner an event that your employees will enjoy while ensuring that they look forward to all future events with anticipation.
Choose the Date
Look over the calendar and choose a date that is not going to interfere with any major holidays, company related tasks (large inventories, system updates, etc.), or local festivities. Discuss the potential date with any company managers or executives whose presence is important. The last thing you want to do is plan a major event that cannot be attended by key members of the company.
Pick a Venue
The venue you pick should reflect the feel or theme of the party. Dinner parties for business should be formal, but they do not have to be too expensive. If the company has experienced a rough time financially then consider reserving a party room at an upscale restaurant or hotel rather than renting a location, then paying separately for catering. Choosing a location that offers buffet style service, rather than table side dining, can substantially lower the cost of the event. Alternatively, a meal served by professional wait staff is a good way to add a touch of elegance to the dinner.
Decide on a Menu
Restaurants that reserve rooms for business dinners will offer a menu that is based on the number of guests that you expect to attend. Plan on offering a meal consisting of at least three courses regardless of whether or not the meal is served buffet style or table side. These courses should include an appetizer, soup or salad, entrée with sides, and a dessert. No one attending your business dinner should leave hungry or unsatisfied.
A business dinner should feature a keynote speaker who will salute the guest of honor if you are celebrating a retirement, or motivate the company at the end of a successful period. The speaker can be someone associated with the company, but it will impress the attendees of the event if you engage a professional speaker who is known in your industry. The speaker should be informative or motivational and any music that is played before or after the speech should be low-key and non intrusive.
Once every aspect of your business dinner is arranged invite your employees and business associates. If the dinner is less formal an office memo or group email is sufficient. When the dinner is more formal or has dress requirements invest in traditional invitations that can be ordered from a printer and distributed by department heads or mail room staff. The invitations should include all aspects of the event including the menu and the name of the guest speaker.