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Doing Business When the Whole City Grinds to a Halt

Everyone in the tri-state area knows that occasionally the entire area grinds to a halt due to a massive convention or other event. From morning the night, the city--especially New York--and surrounding areas may be grid locked due to a steady influx of tourists, vendors and other personnel. When events come into the city and shut everything down, you may need to plan in advance to get things done.

Schedule Meetings Appropriately

When the city is in the throws of a large scale event, the early mornings and evenings are the worst possible time to schedule meetings; think rush hour, but much, much worse. Focus on the times just before lunch and just after lunch to try to get things done--even lunch may be a challenge. And forget about going out to lunch unless you're going to be in a private room; simply waiting may eat into the productivity of your business day.

Consider Dinner Meetings

If you like to meet clients and investors over a meal, consider switching to dinner meetings rather than lunches. During large city events, quite a few spectators and attendees will be going out to lunch. Fewer of them will be going out to dinner--and even fewer of them will be going to finer restaurants as opposed to the tourist-oriented locations. As an additional bonus, most of the activity will have died down by night fall.

Book Any Arrangements Well in Advance

Do you have people flying in for your business meetings? Make sure that they have booked arrangements, such as their hotel stay, in advance. Clients and investors coming from out of town may not be aware of what they are walking into and, consequently, may not realize that the entire city is about to be booked solid. If you want to start your meeting out on the right foot, you should always make sure that your client or investor is well taken care of.

Don't Forget to Arrange Transportation

Whether you need to personally travel across town or you have a client who is flying in for a meeting, don't forget to arrange transportation in advance. It's extremely difficult to acquire transportation on-the-fly when the city is filled with people unfamiliar with it trying to travel from point A to point B. If you want to remain on schedule, reliable transportation is key.

When at all possible, it's usually best to try to avoid any important meetings during large city events. Consider the value of going to your client rather than bringing your client in, or using technology to replace a physical meeting instead. Still, there are ways to get things done even during peak traffic times, as long as you plan in advance.

Posted on Sep 04 2014

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