Hark back to a normal working day in London before March 2020. Across the capital, there would be countless engagements between businesses and their clients. A vital part of many businesses is the ability to entertain and engage with clients. Lockdown and remote working have made that nearly impossible. At our London recruitment agency, as things change to a socially-distanced new normal, we asked some of London’s PAs how they’re helping their executives to entertain clients.
Park and garden life
The easiest and safest way to meet clients is outdoors, although this can feel unusual to begin with. “My boss and I have become pros at sussing out quiet corners of London parks for business get-togethers,” Zac told us. “Our clients have been really receptive.”
Zac organises catering for these experiences, often opting for an afternoon tea delivery. His favourite suppliers are Cutter & Squidge and Betty Blythe.
Alessandro says “We’re starting to gradually bring clients back onsite. They’re still a little wary, so instead of meeting in restaurants, we’re bringing the dining experience here. We have a small courtyard garden, which helps. My boss also has a central London home, so he’s done some entertaining from there.”
Alessandro recommends Dineindulge for finding a private chef and Grape & Fig for fantastic entertainment-worthy grazing platters. He’s also organised cocktails in the office garden with clients using a waiting service found through Mixing Link.
Getting active together
Tennis and golf have rapidly gained momentum as the sports to do with clients. “My boss keeps laughing at me when I organise yet another round of golf or game of tennis,” Julie told us. “He thinks I’m subtly trying to get him to lose the lockdown pounds! In reality, it’s a way for him to spend time with clients in a socially distanced way.”
London dining, the socially distanced way
As more restaurants reopen, it’s possible to arrange for your executive to take clients out for lunch or dinner in a similar way to before. However, people can feel understandably nervous. “We’re picking restaurants very carefully at the moment, and asking questions about how they’re operating,” Lou explains. “We’re choosing ones that are spacious and well-ventilated.”
Lou’s executive has so far entertained clients at Giant Robot, on the spacious terrace at Coq D’Argent, and at the re-jigged and well-thought-out German Gymnasium in King’s Cross.
If a client isn’t ready or able to travel to your premises in London then it’s not a problem, you just need to think outside the box. As Sarah says, “Lots of companies have started doing deliveries that are unique and special. We’ve started organising deliveries to clients to let them know they’re remembered and we’re keen to do business with them.”
Sarah has organised ice cream deliveries from Nonna’s, champagne from The Champagne Company, and cocktail mixing kits from Cocktail Delivery.
Leading the way with clients
Many of those doing PA jobs in London say that clients are gradually returning with greater confidence. As long as you give thought to how the client can get to you or the venue without using public transport, many are willing to meet in person again.
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