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Food and Breaks

These days it seems as though making a presentation and eating go hand in hand, so it’s not unusual for there to be coffee, juice, pastries, fruit, or other snacks available at a presentation you are giving. You may even be asked to give a presentation over lunch, where more substantial fare, such as sandwiches or even hot meals, is to be served. Evening presentations can sometimes involve full-course dinners or buffets. In any case, food service can affect your presentation, so, if you have some say about the situation, you may wish to consider these suggestions:

  • Get to know the people who are handling the food service, and be clear about what your expectations are regarding the kinds of food that will be served, and when, how, and where the food will be set up.

  • Opt for lighter, nutritious fare, such as fruit, pasta, salads, and small sandwiches. Heavier food tends to make people drowsy, especially right after lunch or late in the afternoon. Have plenty of bottled water and juices, as an alternative to sodas, as well as both decaffeinated and caffeinated coffee and tea.

  • If you have a choice, ask that the food service be set up in advance, so that the clanking of dishes and glasses doesn’t interfere with your presentation. If this is not practical, try to have the food set up outside the presentation room to minimize any disturbance.


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