We are a new company looking to work with larger mature firms. Considering we are a startup, we have had rejections from large companies who we actually wanted to buy products from. I believe they analyzed our company history/profile and assumed that we were not good business for them. This are companies which work with much larger firms.

We have had a potential partner agree to give us a site visit and discuss potential collaboration. I am supposed to meet them for the meeting. My question is whether it is necessary to ask my boss for an expensive company car to pick our partner as they travel to our offices. I drive a modest car but the company owns huge expensive cars which I think would give a good impression of our company. Do I ask my boss to give me this company car for the sake of company image. Does it add any value in a business conversation if you know the other person is successful financially? Personally it would to me.

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    You're overthinking this. A quick, "Hey, Boss. Do you want me to take the company BMW to pick up Mr. Moneybags, or should I just take my junkwagon?" is all it would take to figure this out. – Wesley Long Sep 10 '17 at 20:20
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    It would make more sense if your boss were asking this question. They're the one who should be telling you what you should be doing here. – Dukeling Sep 10 '17 at 20:35
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    If you are concerned, book them a taxi or private driver to pick them up. But I love Wesley's answer above. That just about sums it up I think. ('Junkwagon' - lol - a term I shall be using from now on...) – PaulD Sep 10 '17 at 20:42
  • Why would you want to use your own car at all while you are working? – NoBackingDown Sep 11 '17 at 12:54

Does it add any value in a business conversation if you know the other person is successful financially?

Yes, in some situations it does, and definitely go in a presentable nice vehicle if you can. It shows at least that your company thinks they're important enough to warrant it. A 'junk mobile' gives a much less worthy impression.

These are gimmicks, experienced people are aware of them, they appreciate a nice comfortable ride, but it doesn't automatically translate to wealthy. Plenty of fancy seeming businesses are up to their eyeballs in loans and some are even sinking but still keeping up a facade of success and that is taken into account. The bottom line will be the accounts, technical expertise and things like that, but do make an effort with everything else such as the vehicle.

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    While I generally agree with your answer, it could also go the other way around: If I visited a startup company which "owns" several huge expensive cars, i´d think they are unnecessarily overspending and won´t be there very long. Entirely dependent on the setting and the Person you are trying to impress. – Daniel Sep 11 '17 at 6:42

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