Organizing a catered event can be stressful, depending on the professionalism and experience of the catering company you hire. On top of that, certain types of events can be more stressful than others. One of the gatherings that puts people on edge is a corporate event. There are number of reasons for this:
- You may feel that the quality of a event is a professional reflection on you
- Guests may be stressed and/or not want to be there to begin with
- There may be a strict schedule to follow
- There can be a wide range of tastes and diets to accommodate
When it comes to corporate events, there are several errors you can make as an organizer. Read on to make sure your corporate event runs smoothly!
- Neglecting to account for allergies and diverse dietary needs
The last thing you need is a coworker (or even a boss) to be disappointed with the event because there’s nothing for them to eat or drink. These days it’s especially important to address dietary needs, particularly food allergies. High-allergen foods such as those containing gluten, dairy, egg, tree nuts, soybeans, peanuts, and crustaceans can find their way into other foods, which (of course) poses a huge risk for those with allergies. Avoid foods that many people are allergic to, such as peanuts. Many organizers also find it useful to list the ingredients next to dishes in the buffet line. If there won’t be a large number of guests, find out guests’ food preferences and allergies before planning the menu.
- Underestimating the number of guests
Sometimes you won’t know exactly how many guests you’ll have. You may have signed an agreement with the caterer before you’ve received all the responses, or more people showed up than you anticipated. These scenarios definitely happen. That’s why it’s a good idea to overestimate how much food you’ll need. Have fresh food available throughout the event. In the end, having leftover food is always better than not having enough.
- Not ensuring there is enough seating and table space
At corporate events, it’s common for attendees to be carrying around materials, whether they be presentation notes, programs, or other documents. It’s hard to balance a plate full of food and papers at the same time! Pay close attention to tables and seating that guests can use, offering more space and functionality than you might see at a non-work related event. You want your guests to enjoy your food, not spend their time figuring out how to eat it.
- Offering too many options
You may want to offer a wide selection of foods to make sure you please all your guests, but it’s possible to have too many options. Too many dishes can make a formal event feel more informal, and it may lead to long lines and delays at food stations. Many corporate event organizers find it useful to offer one chicken, beef, fish, and vegetarian option to keep things simple.
- Creating an exotic menu
When catering a corporate event, it’s best to go with fresh, well-prepared, tasty dishes rather than something unfamiliar to guests. It’s impossible to please 100% of guests all the time, regardless of what you offer—but you’ll impress a greater portion of guests when you serve familiar dishes or dishes with somewhat familiar flavors. A little exotic can work well, but if you go over the top, you might have more leftovers than you thought.
Don’t make these mistakes!
Avoid mistakes and stress at your corporate event by following these tips, doing your own research, and asking your professional catering company how you can maximize your chances of success. Good luck with your next corporate event!