6 Ways to Boost Productivity at Your Next Lunchtime Meeting

How to make over your midday meeting into a productivity power lunch.

Whether your attendees need to ideate, produce, decide or educate—lunch meetings are a great option for busy co-workers, clients and corporate boards alike. Conducting a meeting over lunch may be more casual, but that doesn’t mean serious work can’t be done.

Follow these 6 steps to make your lunch meeting productivity-packed:

1. Provide a private setting: A separate conference room or meeting space is ideal for lunch meetings so that guests feel free to mingle, discuss and voice their opinions.

2. Serve up some brain food: Adequate iron can boost productivity by 20 percent, according to The World Health Organization. So forget about pizza, chips and white-flour foods. Consider adding fatty fish like tuna or salmon, avocado, nuts and seeds, and whole grains to the menu.

3. Skip dessert: While you’re at it, skip the sugary snacks and beverages, too. These will leave guests with a temporary sugar high, followed by an energy crash.

4. Create and circulate an agenda beforehand: Serving lunch adds a casual element to any meeting, but relevant discussions still need to occur and decisions need to be made. An agenda will keep everyone on track and cue them in to the purpose of the meeting.

5. Build in some social time: Whether attendees are plating their own lunch or being served, the presence of food always triggers an inclination for chitchat. Rather than trying to contain the conversation, build in time at the beginning for introductions, pleasantries and small talk.

6.  Use technology to captivate a hungry audience: The last thing any lunch guest wants to do is shuffle through handouts. Use technology by projecting the agenda and any necessary presentations, graphics and charts onto a large screen.