For many people who love Starbucks, it isn’t only about the coffee. Sure there are folks who stop by just to grab their skinny vente latte macchiato with a shot of espresso, but for so many others the coffee is secondary to the Starbucks experience.
What do I mean by “experience?” The sound of the baristas reciting orders (what in the world was that last drink?!); the happy-go-lucky music (sold at the cash register, too!); the camaraderie and community of other individuals pecking away at their laptops and tablets (maybe writing the next great American novel)—it’s a cozy yet energetic, clamorous yet studious environment not found anywhere.
Even still, some people choose to hold their business meetings at a Starbucks. And why not, considering you can find one at just about every street corner.
Consider these facts, however:
• Most Starbucks locations are busy, loud and crowded, making it difficult to hear and concentrate on the conversation at hand.
• With tables situated in very close proximity, there’s little privacy to be had. You may even have to share a communal table.
• The Wi-Fi connection is not secure and at times can be very spotty.
Bottom-line: the overall ambiance is not conducive to a business meeting.
“Solopreneurs” who work out of a home office shouldn’t rely on a Starbucks as their preferred business
meeting location. In fact they don’t have to! Executive office spaces (yes, like Champion Office Suites!) provide the ideal venue for anyone that wants to conduct their business meetings in a professional environment.
In-person meetings should be run in a location that has all of the features of a “regular” office environment:
• Respectable and professional appearance & ambiance
• Maximum privacy
• Access to required technology
• Minimal distractions
I think it’s fair to say that you will find none of the above at a Starbucks.
Starbucks shouldn’t be one of your options when contemplating the location for your next business meeting. I admit that Starbucks is great for a cup ‘o joe and a casual conversation with a friend or colleague, but you must consider move elsewhere if you want to create an impression of professionalism or need to accomplish or discuss serious business matters.