My last blog Coffee is Good For Business! shared 3 benefits of scheduling coffee meetings each week. Here are 5 Points to keep your coffee meetings casual but controllable.
Purpose – before you make that invite, determine why you want to have coffee with that person. Is it just to reconnect? Are they a potential client? Is it purely social or do you have an interest in what they have to offer? Make a short list of topics or points that you want to touch on.
Precise – be specific in your invitation. Busy people like details so they can tell at a glance whether they can fit it into their schedule.
“Hi Willa, I enjoyed meeting you at the Connected Woman meeting last week but as with all networking events, there never seems to be enough time to meet everyone. I would like to invite you for coffee at Waves Coffee next Thursday at 11am for half an hour to learn more about you and what you do. Are you available?”
Place – pick a coffee house that is central to both of you. Try to avoid the local hangout. You want to be focused on your guest and it will be hard to do if you keep getting interrupted with ‘Hey Cathy!” from other co-workers and colleagues as they come into the shop.
Punctual – by arriving on time if not even a bit early, you’ve indicated the importance of time and that ½ an hour is exactly what you have for time. Should you both agree to extend your meeting, 10-15 minutes extra should be the maximum. If you have much more to talk about, schedule another time for a longer period to get together again.
Pen to Paper – the article On That Note gives you all the good reasons to take pen in hand and send a personalized note to thank them for their time. Want them to remember their coffee meeting with you? Send a note.
Now Go Get Connected!