Have you ever attended an all-day meeting or business conference where delicious meals and appealing snacks were offered throughout the day right on schedule? I’m sure it’s one you’d be more than happy to attend again. It’s true what they say: “Feed them and they will come!”
We’ve seen for ourselves that providing high quality food at meetings can add to the success of the event. Here’s how:
Better Attendance and Fewer Late Arrivals
First off, who doesn’t love food … especially delicious food? If you offer a well-appointed catered breakfast, for example, you can almost guarantee that your attendees will be there on time – probably even early. They won’t want to miss their fresh-baked blueberry muffin or the chance to bite into some crunchy applewood smoked bacon as they sip their piping hot cup of coffee before getting down to business.
Also, why risk sending your attendees out for lunch on their own. There’s always a handful that will come back late (or not return at all) and disrupt or delay the afternoon sessions. Then it feels like you’re behind schedule the rest of the day and the disruptions create a bad vibe that can ruin any momentum from the morning sessions.
Instead, keep control of your schedule by controlling your attendees – order in lunch!
A build-your-own taco/burrito bar is a tried-and-true favorite, but maybe your group prefers a healthier Deluxe Salad Bar with more toppings than you can imagine. This keeps your team on-site and they’ll be nearby when you’re ready to reconvene.
Increased Productivity, Creativity, and Engagement
We’ve all been there … at a meeting conference table sitting in front of your laptop or doodling on your notepad trying to focus on the speaker or contribute to the discussion. But all you can think about is your stomach growling while you’re watching the clock to see how long you’ll have to wait to finally get some lunch.
Morning and afternoon refreshment breaks are a must. How about a bagel bar with a selection of flavored cream cheeses midway through the morning sessions? Or a 2:30 pm pick-me-up break where with house-made bagel chips and fresh vegetables … or maybe even delicious desserts that deliver a shot of sugar so your attendees can make to the finish line at 5 pm!
The point is, providing light, fresh, delicious snack options throughout the day, provides fuel for your attendees so they can actively engage in and focus on the sessions, resulting in increased creativity and productivity.
Connection and Comfort
Many business teams have been meeting remotely for two years or more due to the pandemic. We all know that Zoom or Teams chat rooms can’t match mingling in person around a breakfast bar or dessert table. And you can’t build business relationships online the way you can sitting side by side around a conference table enjoying a creative, delicious boxed meal during the lunch break.
Maybe your team has new team members or has been newly assembled. Food and beverages have been tried-and-true ice breakers since the beginning of time! Meal and snack breaks are the great equalizer and humanizer to develop trust and camaraderie within teams and organizations.
Once you get conversations flowing in these meal-break settings, attendees start to feel more comfortable, and these connections lead to trust and teamwork.
Finally, and maybe most important, offering creative, fresh food and snacks at your business meeting shows you value the attendees and you’re committed to hosting a meaningful session.
Culinary WAVE has been serving the business community in Colorado for more than 15 years – groups in all kinds of settings ranging in size from 20 to 2,000. Contact us to discuss how we can make your next meeting or conference even more memorable.