Marie Raperto, The Hiring Hub
Lunchtime at the office, does it really matter what you do? While every office environment is different, lunchtime can be a good networking opportunity or something very political. So, yes, it matters. Here are some tips for using your lunch break productively:
- Don’t eat alone. Lunch is a perfect time to network. You can meet new people, speak with the senior people or catch up with friends. Eating at the same table is natural and not stressful.
- Don’t talk too much. You want to learn about people and what they do. Be an active listener and ask questions. Dominating the conversation will turn others off and you won’t get to eat much of your lunch.
- Watch your body language. You want to be open, welcoming and friendly. Make eye contact and smile.
- You want to network, not have the same people at the same table everyday. Try to eat at different times and at different tables. Or do something totally different. It will give you something to talk about the following day!
- Be mindful of others and watch your manners.
- Balance the conversation between personal and work. Keep it light. If you have additional questions, you can always contact the person at a later date.
- Don’t bring your phone to the table.
- Don’t bring paperwork with you. It’s a ‘break’ from work.
Enjoy your lunch hour. You deserve it!