When was the last time you ate a really good meal while in a meeting?
If you're like most people, the boss might "order in" some pizzas, which show up cold, go down greasy and settle like a bomb in your stomach (along with the garlic bread and tepid soda and stale cookie you also consumed).
That's why asking the boss out to a nice meal can have numerous payoffs. Not only do you get much better food, but you also put the boss in a better mood because she's not eating cold food and trying not to belch in someone's face before she can sneak a couple of Rolaids.
If you do ask the boss to lunch or dinner, here's how to make a good impression:
- Call his or her assistant before the meal and ask if there are any places the boss hates -- or food that will cause the boss to go into anaphylactic shock and end your meeting much too quickly.
- Talk to the restaurant hostess before the meal to arrange a quiet table where you can talk. Somewhere away from the kitchen and front door. Ask that your server be told it's a business meal and you're willing to tip extra for the best waiter or waitress on staff.
- Turn off your cell phone or put it on mute during the meal. I shouldn't have to say this, but I do.
- Make sure there's nearby parking. If the boss won't be able to park, offer to arrange a taxi for him. Make sure you're there up to 15 minutes early so that you won't be late.
- Arrange to pick up the check beforehand.
Now, the rest is up to you. Be friendly, be professional and be prepared. If you give the boss a nice dining experience, she might be willing to repay the favor -- with a promotion.
What other tips are there for dining out with the boss or business contact?