I have been truly amazed what a meeting can mean for an organization. People really do give to people, and once you have sat across from someone and heard his or her story, the possibility of receiving a gift from that person increases exponentially. I completely understand the reasons behind cold calls and meetings “just to talk” because they do result in hard dollars.
One of the biggest challenges I’ve faced is framing a connecting meeting. Sales and business development people are willing and understand the value of just connecting. But, business owners, CEO’s, and senior managers don’t really see the point. Under what pretense do you meet and introduce people to your organization? In my initial meetings I almost never talk about money. But, money seems to be what everyone expects us to talk about.
How do you frame a connecting meeting with someone new? Under what pretense do you ask to meet with them? How do you ask them to meet with you and what do you ask to meet about? What do you say when they ask for an agenda?