August 17, 2018

Event Strategies

3 Steps for Hosting a Can't-Miss Executive Dinner


Corrine Stratton

Learn the few steps it takes to produce a high-quality executive dinner that inspires networking and business collaboration.


Executive dinners are an exclusive way to get top industry leaders together in an informal setting, inspiring networking, and peer collaboration. An executive dinner, or even a breakfast or lunch, can be held for a multitude of reasons. They may be part of a larger event such as conference, or a stand-alone event geared toward getting in front of the ultimate decisions makers, your executive prospects.

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Below are three steps for making sure your next executive dinner is a can’t-miss meeting.

1. Executive Dinners Are All About Location

Your venue selection plays a vital role in the success of your executive meeting. Picking a location that is unique or has a reputation for being exclusive, drives intrigue and anticipation to attend your meeting. The right atmosphere determines your guest’s ability to network and engage with one another, creating value in their attendance. Finally, having good food and customer service creates an experience your attendees are unlikely to forget.

restraurant with a lot of greenery and large chandelier

2. Make Sure the Right People Are in the Room

Executive’s do not hand over their time easily, so it is crucial that your meeting provides value by making sure there is strong content and that the right people are in the room. Leaders at top organizations face a unique set of challenges that only their peers can truly understand. For their CIO Executive Dinners, IDG targets attendees with a director title or above and has strict guidelines on the organizations invited to the meeting. This creates exclusivity and insurance attendees will be meeting with their peers.

group of people meeting and having conversation

Executive dinners should be developed around a business challenge that everyone in the room experiences. Together, attendees can share their insights, ask questions, and look to your organization for support. Hosting executive dinners known for their exclusive attendees, open discussion, and problem-solving solutions will strengthen your event’s reputation as a must-attend industry dinner.

3. Create a Comfortable Networking Environment

Keith Ferrazzi, author of Never Eat Alone, believes networking events and dinners should be a mix of both the personal and the professional. ISMG (Information Security Media Group) hosts roundtable meetings as a way to provide their targeted professionals with an environment where they share their own experiences while learning strategies they can implement as soon as they get back to the office.

Creating an atmosphere that is conducive for getting to know one another on a personal level establishes your event as more than just a sales pitch. Your ability to bring leaders together demonstrates your desire to move the industry forward.

four people networking

Hosting a successful executive dinner means making sure you utilize the limited time you have to your full advantage. Find a venue that attracts and wows attendees, make sure they will find value in collaborating with the other guests in the room, and create a space that makes sharing ideas and getting to know one another possible.

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