Experiencing one boring meeting will encourage people to avoid similar events in the future. No one likes to have precious time wasted. Worse yet, are the types of meetings where one person does all of the speaking while showing little interest or concern for others in the room. Instead, the person doing all of the talking is spending the time trying to impress the others.
Why do people agree to meet?
Deep down they believe the other person might potentially have a recommendation to offer for their benefit. And should this be the case, it is no wonder that the person driving the meeting with a huge ego will kill all possibility of anything good coming from the meeting.
A better approach is to view the meeting as a place where all parties may openly discuss what’s on their mind such as current projects, areas of concern, where help might be needed, and requests for help. And the best way to begin the conversation is to thank the other person for their time and the opportunity to get to know one another.
Opportunity becomes possible when you are open to hearing of the other person’s experiences, and their approach for making their vision reality. An equal give and take is ideal. During the exchange, ideas should easily flow to make recommendations and offer specific introductions that may well benefit each other’s endeavors, or for partnering as well.
After thanking your prospect for the meeting, the casual conversation comes next as it pertains to any pictures you see in the office or signs of hobbies hanging on the wall. Getting off on a somewhat personal note will relax the conversation to get your prospective client to confide what is on their mind.
A great way to begin the business portion of the meeting is to ask, “Your job must be so demanding, please tell me why you agreed to see me today?” This gets the conversation onto the direct path of how you might possibly solve their problems. The act of working to solve client problems is a key requirement for getting the sale because trust is built along with your personal brand.
The best example is of a meeting that took place at a business club providing excellent ambience. This in itself produced a relaxed conversation beginning with personal introductions. Next, factual and brief career highlights, held in common, were exchanged. The conversation flowed into a few crazy sales stories making the conversation lighter by the minute.
By the end of the 90-minute meeting, each promised the other to make several introductions. And those introductions on both sides were perceived as phenomenal connections. Time could not have been better spent. Both parties sent those follow-up introductions within 48 hours after the meeting.
When your guests or prospective clients feel grateful that the meeting took place, then time was spent extraordinarily well. This is how business opportunities abound. Not only was the meeting enjoyable, but it also turned into a Smooth Sale!
This story originally appeared on Personal Branding Blog