Embarrassing stories tend to haunt you in the professional world, so while you should have fun at any major sales events or ceremonies, you should never cross the line. To help keep your manners in check and your wits about you, heed the following five pearls of wisdom:
Back off the Sauce
As Homer Simpson once so poetically put it, alcohol can often feel like both the cause of and solution to all life’s problems. For a business meeting, offering libation can help people relax and enjoy themselves, but it can spell trouble if one overindulges.
Always keep your drinks to a minimum, such as only having one every two hours. If you worry about your ability to focus on business or to resist drinking in excess, then cut off the booze entirely while at the event to avoid the risks.
Resist Being the Center of Attention
Whether by wearing loud clothes, talking loudly or behaving like a middle schooler whose parents always leave them home alone, some people can tend to dominate the spotlight at an event or awards ceremony. Sometimes, these antics are appreciated, but in all instances they can take away focus from others, especially presenters, senior staff and awards recipients.
Feel free to be friendly and energetic while engaging with attendees, but try to maintain self awareness to avoid drawing too much attention to yourself too often.
Let Others Get a Word In
Similar to the point above, always maintain awareness of how often you talk or respond in conversations and group meetings. You can learn a lot from others, or at the very least forge some connections, if you simply listen. Try to wait a few seconds in between both your statements and theirs to give the conversation a little room to breathe.
Also, be wary of seniority when in a group of mixed colleagues. Talking over or interrupting your boss is never good form, so always wait for them to defer to you first or request commentary.
Even if some people claim they do want to hear the one about the one-legged proctologist, telling lewd jokes in a crowd almost inevitably makes someone, somewhere feel uncomfortable. The same goes for any controversial topics like religion, politics or whether Star Wars is better than Star Trek.
And, as much as we wish we didn’t have to say it, sales events are not the time to pursue romance. This isn’t camp, boys and girls. You run the risk of permanently damaging working relationships if your advance is taken the wrong way, and even a successful rendezvous will end in awkwardness in the future. I’m sure some people met their soul mate at a business event, but many more met an untimely end to their respectful image as a result of rumors.
Come Prepared by Using Sales Training Materials
No one wants to work too hard at events that are supposed to be partially about socializing, but you should recognize that opportunities for productive conversations or deepened relationships abound. Sales reps and managers that know their stuff can feel confident and look informed without having to show off.
You and your staff can train for these situations together when you use 2Win!’s sales training materials like our informative sales webinars, which can teach you proper ways to hold informed, high-level sales conversations. You can also sign up for our open workshops to get group training in-person and prepare to arrive at sales events looking like a pro.