Having Lunch With a CEO

Having Lunch With a CEO

The CEO invites you to lunch–and he chooses… 

Are you prepared to dine with your CEO? It’s an opportunity to demonstrate your dining skills, and also your communication and social skills. This is not the time to toss back a few brewskis or share your gripes.

Q: I’m new to the workplace. About one month into the job, our CEO invited me and my boss out to lunch.  I was pretty nervous, but my boss said our CEO was easy to get along with. Once we stepped into the elevator, I was shocked to hear the profanity and talk about one of our clients.  Just when I thought the awkwardness was over, we head into a restaurant known for the female servers and low cut tops. 

I’m a normal guy, but I expected work-related lunches to have a more professional atmosphere, especially when the CEO is involved.

During lunch I was quiet, possibly giving off an uninterested vibe.  Could my lack of enthusiasm been seen as negative factor?  Should I have faked it and joined in the conversation?

A:  Don’t compromise your principles.  There are a few options to consider:

  • Accept their invitation on a less regular basis.
  • Suggest and eat and walk lunch.
  • Have a few topics up your sleeve to change the subject.
  • Jokingly point out, “Is that all you guys talk about?”
  • Using a “white lie”, “My friend’s company sends you to “sensitivity training” if they catch you talking about…”

Helping Businesses and Individuals Find Success Through Better Communication and Social Skills

having lunch with a CEO, business dining etiquetteRosalinda Oropeza Randall, Social Skills and Civility Presenter, Media Source, and author of “Don’t Burp in the Boardroom.”

Presentations are available to support HR policies, sales team, up and coming managers, millennial & new-hire orientation process, in-home technicians, professional development events, conferences, college/university students, interns. For more information, please contact me, 650.871.6200.



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