Living in New York City for the summer, the entire family is learning that personal space is much smaller than it is in Texas - not only in apartments and theatre seats, but also in restaurants. More often that not, once seated for albeit a fabulous meal, you will be close to the strangers seated next to you. Very close.
You never know whom you are sitting next to, what company they work for or with, and who they may know that would be oh-so-interested in the information you are discussing freely in public. Wonder Husband and I heard all sorts of private company information at a sushi restaurant on 51st and 6th in New York City. Two executives in the financial sector were having quite the "private" conversation. One started that conversation with, "Please don't repeat this, I probably shouldn't even be telling you this."
When discussing business in a public place, here are five helpful tips:
Watch Your Volume
We all tend to speak louder in a crowded restaurant, trying to be heard above the din. That loud voice easily carries over to the table next to you. Or maybe even farther.
Ask For Another Table
If you really need to have this private conversation in this particular location, do your best to get a table away from others, one in a corner, or at least a table in the quietest area in the establishment so you don't have to speak loudly to be heard.
Does It Have To Be Said?
Is this really important information or just gossip? If you don't want something repeated, don't say it in the first place.
Write It, Don't Say It
If the information is that sensitive, write it on your phone, show it to the other person, then delete it. A text is not a good idea in this situation. That can be shared as well.
Pick A Better Location
If this is a private conversation that must be conducted then pick a place no one can overhear you. Period.
There is very little to absolutely no privacy anywhere anymore, especially in public. Remember that when you are saying something you don't want repeated outside of a private conversation.