Monday, April 19, 2010

Grow Your Business Meetings - 10 Tips on How to Create a Positive Image in Person

Prepare your business meetings for success!

10 simple Tips

1. Be punctual

* Allow for delays: You can bet your boots the more important the meeting the more likely Murphy's Law will come into effect!
* In worst case scenario where you get caught out, telephone ahead if you are unavoidably delayed and are going to be late.

2. Take care with your personal appearance

* Be clean and well groomed - including hair, hands and fingernails.
* Wear outfits that are smart but comfortable - you'll find it difficult to concentrate if your waistband is digging in or your toes are pinched.
* Steer clear of any overpowering smells that might pre-announce your arrival...

3. On being kept waiting

* Don't wait longer than is reasonable beyond the agreed appointment time (I'd say about 15 minutes), unless you are chasing payment or there is a viable and acceptable reason
* Don't be obvious about it but keep your eyes and ears open and use the time to learn from your surroundings.
* If you must conduct other business on your mobile telephone whilst waiting, do so quietly and discreetly.

4 Be aware of your personal mannerisms - and tame the disagreeable ones

* Don't jiggle change or keys, drum your fingers on the table or your laptop, keep flicking your hair back or scratching your nose, for example - the first habits are irritating, the last two make you look nervous or potentially dodgy...
* Any habit you have has been learned - if it's irritating, unlearn it!

5 Use your eyes wisely in the meeting

* Look the prospect in the eye when talking to him, but don't stare at him as though you're trying to hypnotise him!
* If you are meeting with a group of people and the chain of command is not obvious, look to see who the group look to for approval or defer to, and make a point of subtly visually acknowledging that distinction.

6 At the same time use your ears

* What is your prospect's tone of voice - is it bored, aggressive, interested or eager - and adjust your pitch to accommodate it - but never be aggressive back

7 Don't "pounce"

* Be careful not to pounce on your prospect and continually interrupt him - not only is it likely to be extremely annoying to him but also you won't be giving him the opportunity to open up and provide the information you need in order to progress your goal - let him talk

8 Avoid potential pitfalls

* You may well be nervous but you want to appear calm and in control. So politely decline the cup of tea or coffee that may be on offer, thus avoiding the potential clattering of the cup in the saucer or, even worse, slopping the contents. Request a glass of water instead. Leave the water to one side until you are more relaxed and in your stride

9 Project an aura of friendly professionalism

* You don't have to smile all the time, in fact it would look decidedly odd if you did, but the smile should be there in your voice
* Don't confuse this with familiarity - you are there as a professional, not to be your prospect's chum

10 Know when to leave

* Once you have achieved the objective of the meeting, or as close as you're going to get to your objective, outline and agree next steps and go!

Happy meetings and prospecting!

By : Linda_Mattacks

No comments: