Let’s face it, food is an essential component of an effective offsite meeting. This week I want to share with you some meeting catering ideas to help you plan your best meeting ever.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day…..or at least that’s what I’ve heard anyway. Below are a few simple guidelines to follow when considering breakfast for an offsite meeting:
- Order Breakfast! If your meeting begins by 9am or earlier, you need to offer catering. I’ve encountered multiple meetings that have not had breakfast options available and the facilitator is either requesting a last minute order, or team members are running to the nearest coffee shop. If breakfast in not in your budget, you need to make sure everyone knows to fill their bellies before they arrive to the meeting.
- Make sure healthy options are offered. Pastries, donuts, and bagels are an easy “go-to” in the mornings, but more often than not the sugary carbs are still abundant, while the fruit, yogurt, and oatmeal are gone. Another benefit from offering healthy meal options is having an alert team throughout the meeting.
By the time noon rolls around the team is hungry, and probably getting a little antsy for a break. Here are a couple catering food menu ideas and guidelines to consider when scheduling lunch during an offsite:
- Please do not schedule working lunches. This is time for your team to re-energize, check personal email/phone calls, and take a mental “time-out” from the meeting. Plus, your team may not retain as much information due to the fact they are trying to eat!
- Steer clear of heavy carbs and fried foods. Pasta dishes, heavy creams, and fried foods are sure to send your team into an afternoon fog, which is a factor to be considered when planning a menu. This part of the day is hard enough to get through without adding food induced comas to the mix.
- Also try to steer away from offering desserts directly after lunch. Don’t get mad at me just yet. I’m not telling you to completely eliminate the dessert, but wait until later in the afternoon. Offering high-sugar treats right after a meal will add to your team’s sugar-high let down, and also take away your chance to surprise them with an afternoon treat.
Who doesn’t love a good snack or dessert? If you’re not a dessert person, you’re likely a savory person, so this should cover everyone.
- Offering snacks during an offsite is a great way to keep your team fueled and happy. Healthy options are always the best. Veggie trays, hummus trays, and the occasional cheese and cracker tray are great options for afternoon snacks and a great surprise for your afternoon break.
- I told you I wouldn’t forget the desserts! We would have some disappointed people if desserts weren’t offered, so offering desserts in the afternoon is your best option. This is close to the end of your meeting, and the team is needing a “pick me up”. Cookies, brownies, and ice cream are yummy options, but you could also try adding some chocolate covered strawberries or a fruit bowl to appease the healthy eaters.
Hopefully these meeting catering ideas are useful when planning your next offsite. If you need more meeting catering ideas or you’d like some help planning your best meeting ever, email or call me anytime. I’m always happy to help!