A lot can happen over a coffee, even productive business meeting. Coffee meeting has typically become a business date for most of the entrepreneurs and creative professionals. This kind of meeting is a safe way to build connections with your business associates. When you ask, “Can we meet over a coffee?”, make sure that you follow one golden rule, never waste yours and the invited person’s time. As this is business meeting but of a casual nature, it can sometimes end up being unproductive conversation. You need to do your homework well before you go for a coffee meeting.
Since, coffee meeting would last for a short time, just exchange the views and lay the groundwork for a strong business relationship, don’t get too much carried away with the conversation.
If you want to make your coffee meeting much productive then follow the below steps:
Do your homework:
Two minutes of Googling will help you get to know the opposite person quite well. You can also look for their profile pages online and gather more information about them. Remember, the information which you fetched from Google should not be unnecessarily dragged in the conversation. Ask them something which you don’t know and carry on with the discussion. Little bit of homework will help you to have healthy conversation and directly talk on the main subject without wasting time with vague question and answer session.
Don’t be late:
Whether it’s a formal business meeting or an informal one, being late is the sign of unprofessionalism. In business it is very important to respect time thus always be present on time or even before time for a meeting. Traffic jam, breakdown of your transportation and other such excuses will not be entertained. The best solution is to leave early for the meeting. Sometimes arriving late for a meeting may reflect as dominant nature of yours which would create a negative impact.
You don’t have to literally have coffee:
Meeting over a coffee doesn’t mean that you should concentrate on just coffee. Deciding over the flavors or taking pleasure of each sip may waste your quality meeting time. For official meetings, Coffee shop is just a medium to build business connection rather than a hang out spot. Even if you love coffee, don’t get indulged in drinking, focus on the subject to discus. And in this short conversation, if you plan to order snacks then it can be a very bad option. Pay attention and take up important notes, if you get involved in eating, you will fail to jot down the information. You are not here to explore the café menu, you are here to establish a business association.
How to end the meeting?
After an awesome conversation, if the ending turns into an awkward situation then the final result of the meeting will be unproductive. It will be well-mannered if you set your time limitations beforehand, instead of leaving the conversation in midway. 20 to 30 minutes of time is adequate for a fruitful conversation. Respect each other’s time and try to wind up on time. You can set an alarm and professionally end up the conversation with proper feedback and if necessary ask for a follow up.
Therefore set expectations and avoid awkward ending.
A short coffee meeting can build a long-lasting business relationship. So brew up your coffee meeting effectively and make it productive.