I guess it’s all about expectation levels.
Back in the 90’s, when I worked for a large training organisation, anyone attending a course at one of the company’s state-of-the-art training centres would be greeted by the smell of fresh coffee and a “delegate lounge” where there were newspapers, bowls of fruit and plates of croissants and Danish pastries. In the training room, on each desk you would find bowls of sweets.
Somewhere between 10:30 and 11:00, there would be a 15-minute comfort break. Whether you chose to spend this time using the bathroom, having a cigarette or drinking more coffee and eating more pastries was up to you (these were in the days before we’d spend our breaks catching up on FaceBook, Twitter and emails!)
Lunch would consist of a buffet with a choice of sandwiches, salads and often a hot dish. Then it was back to coffee and pastries in the afternoon (after the sweet bowls had been filled up of course).
I always remember an old boss saying that people would go away happier if they’d been fed well.
For the last few years I’ve worked as an in-house trainer for several organisations. We don’t provide lunch. We don’t provide refreshments. We’re judged on the quality of the training. Or maybe it’s just the effects of cost-cutting?