How to Thank Someone for a Business Lunch

Written by aksana nikolai
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A business lunch involves discussing work-related matters with colleagues, clients or potential employers over a meal. As with other types of meetings, it is important to be familiar with business lunch etiquette. Some tend to overlook the importance of thanking someone for a business lunch. A well-executed thank-you can increase your chances of closing business with a client in the future and/or getting positive referrals. It can also improve your standing in the eyes of associates and employers.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Handwritten or electronic thank you note

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  1. 1

    Give a verbal thank-you at the end of the lunch--even if the meeting did not go as you expected or did not have a favourable outcome. You may wish to complement the thank-you with an offer to reciprocate on a future occasion.

  2. 2

    Follow up with a written thank-you, even if no business was closed at the lunch---for example, decisions reached or action items agreed upon. Do so within 48 hours of the meeting, while the details of the meeting are still fresh in both the recipient's and your mind.

  3. 3

    Compose either a handwritten note or an e-mail message. Some feel that a handwritten note is a more personal touch than electronic communications are. In addition to expressing your thanks, reference what you liked most about the meeting and briefly recap key points of the conversation.

Tips and warnings

  • Include your business card with your thank-you note if you and the recipient did not have a prior relationship. Doing so will ensure that the recipient has your contact details and, in the future, can serve as a reminder of your meeting.
  • If sending an electronic thank-you note, incorporate the contents of your business card into the signature portion of your e-mail.

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