According to U.S. Small Business Administration statistics from 2018, there are 2.1 million corporations in New York with less than 500 employees. That’s not including the numerous multinational organizations headquartered in the Empire State, many of which appear on the Fortune 500 list every year.
With such a massive business presence, especially in Manhattan, there’s a good chance you’ll be invited, attend, or otherwise be involved with corporate events. However, you may also be in charge of planning one. When that opportunity arrives, you’ll need to understand everything that goes into the process. There’s a significant amount of time and effort behind the scenes, which is why many people in your position trust the task to corporate catering in NYC. Here are a few points to consider when you’re called upon to present an unforgettable event.
Start with the Event’s Purpose and Budget:
You need to establish a clear, defined objective for your corporate affair, as you can’t confuse attendees with competing goals. Whether you’re selling a product, training employees, a company retreat, attracting investors, or aiming for other purposes, the first step is establishing your purpose. From there, you should consider:
- What you hope to accomplish;
- How you can achieve your goals through this event;
- The message you want participants to take away.
Of course, your purpose is also closely tied to your budget and venue. Catering decisions must start with all of these initial considerations and, even if you need to adjust them, there’s less financial sting – and hassles – later if you’re scrambling to cover costs.
Review Corporate Guest Profiles:
The details of your attendees are just as important to initial planning, as they’re the equivalent of guests you’d serve if you owned a restaurant. Keep in mind that many of them may attend several events throughout the year – or maybe as often as a few times per month. You want your corporate affair to stand out, so consider:
- The professions and occupations of your guests;
- Similar events these people may be attending;
- Any special considerations based upon your attendees; and,
- What they’d expect from your event … and what would be a pleasant surprise in terms of refreshments and service.
Research Menu Options and Themes:
With your guest profiles in mind, you can work on style and the type of cuisine you’ll serve. The details depend on your purpose, but you might develop a theme around a product launch, investor goals, or corporate messaging. You’ll also need to consider your venue and what’s possible within the space you’ve chosen for your event. Popular options include such classics as passed hors d’oeuvres and appetizer buffets, but modern twists might be:
- Food trucks;
- Stir fry stations;
- Cupcake and candy stands;
- Make your own concoctions; and,
- Many more.
Consider Regional and Seasonal Specialties:
Manhattan corporate catering services will typically incorporate food, beverage, and décor options that focus on location and time of year. The benefits are cost and efficiency, since suppliers have plentiful bounties and transportation is minimal. At the same time, these themes are attractive to corporate event attendees who appreciate sustainability and the diminished carbon footprint.
Work Around the Venue and Schedule:
While the catering should be an important factor in corporate events, it’s still necessary to make the arrangements efficient and workable around the objectives of the corporate meeting. If a segment is scheduled around a break between sessions, you’ll need to consider the best, most productive way to serve a multitude of people in a short amount of time. When your catering is part of an event that’s longer in duration, you’ll need to plan several courses that can proceed in appropriate succession.
Double Check and Finalize:
One overlooked factor in corporate catering is the final walk-through and staging. Last minute details are crucial, especially when you don’t know the specifics of the venue until you arrive. The best Manhattan catering services always make time for a dress rehearsal, sometimes bringing in friends and colleagues to provide opinions and support.
Contact New York Corporate Catering Services for Help with Your Next Event
As you can see, there’s a lot that goes into catering for a corporate event. The burden can be overwhelming as you’re juggling various tasks and items on your To-Do list. For the experienced professionals at Thomas Oliver’s Gourmet Catering & Events, this process is all part of a day’s work. We’ll have you covered from start to finish, so please contact our Manhattan office to learn more about our services for corporate catering and events.