Following the Six Nations at Twickenham Stadium, we turn our attention to the hospitality experience as a chance to socialise. Whilst most guests will know each other as friends and family, for many it’s a business occasion and time to get networking.
There is an increasing spotlight on events and the behaviours they can elicit, meaning those organising have an onus to make sure company ethics are upheld, and if you are the one attending to ensure you don’t spark any unwanted attention.
Hospitality experiences are about enjoying world-class entertainment in great surroundings with like-minded people. These simple rules of engagement can ensure everyone’s enjoyment and help keep your party, your brand and your company out of the spotlight and off the front pages.
Whether you are going as a group to celebrate a milestone event, as a team to acknowledge work well done or as a guest to recognise your valuable business relationship, to ensure it’s memorable for all the right reasons, here are some quick fix do’s and don'ts:
If you are hosting a group:
- Be aware of the dress code and communicate it to those attending in plenty of time. Generally, this will be outlined on the event’s website and should be repeated on your event documentation.
- Do you want your company name on the door of a private suite or table plan? Sometimes anonymity is greater than bold branding.
- Do your research and know your guests, their catering and allergen needs, the organisations they represent and their latest business news. Make sure you avoid any unnecessary commercial faux-pas.
- Keep the conversation on track and in line with why you are there. If its business-centric, keep it light but keep it professional.
- Be aware of social media throughout the event, keeping track of images posted and how the event is being portrayed.
- If you have a photographer, ensure that the images captured reflect the overriding ethos of the event and be sure to have diversity in the group.
If you are part of the group:
- Treat hospitality staff with respect and politeness.
- Be aware of the transport options and potential bottlenecks ahead of time, so that you can plan to get safely to and from the event in advance.
- Explore the menu options, such as new food offerings, cocktails and mocktails, to make the most of the unique setting and experience. Special dietary requirements are always captured in advance, however, don’t be shy to ask questions if you want or need to know more.
- Engage with those around you and be confident to make new connections, remember that everyone is in the same boat so make the first move and discover common interests and shared experiences. Extend the conversation beyond the day; connect via LinkedIn to grow mutual communities.
Now that you are prepared for the event you can make time to work the table and, most importantly, enjoy networking.
*this blog has been updated as of March 2020.
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