A Different Way To Look At Networking …One Cup Of Coffee At A Time
What I love most about what I do is my ability to meet a ton of individuals each day, week and month. With a background in journalism (and as a person) my drive is to learn more about other people and to give them a chance to tell their story—essentially, business networking. That is one of the main reasons why I decided to launch MarkUBiz. It is the best of all worlds. I get to get to know a ton of people, hear their stories and then become a part of that story by helping them take their vision to the next level through expanded marketing efforts or broadened brand exposure. Because of my passion for getting to know people, I work on the philosophy of friendship first, business second.
Why A Cup Of Coffee?
Have you ever been to a networking event or even at a one-to-one meeting with someone where you feel like you are being sold to the whole time? I am sure the answer is yes. Usually, when you walk away from that meeting all you can think about is how pushy that person was. Don’t you love meetings where you feel like you actually get to know and understand someone? I know I do. That is where the cup of coffee cames from. Instead of setting up a time to talk about me, I like to get together with people and learn about their business, why they do what they do, how to refer business to them and what their hobbies are.
It Is Called A ‘Learn More’ Meeting
At MarkUBiz we never talk about having sales meetings or inviting client’s in for networking. We call all meetings with potential clients “learn more meetings.” We want to take the time to get to know you, your business, your hobbies and what really makes you tick. Once we understand that, we will be able to partner with you in your journey.
Stop Focusing On Sales…You Can’t Control That
Another lesson I have learned over the years that fits well with my “cup of coffee” philosophy is to be focused on the action, not the results. When you go to networking events your focus may be to get as many business cards as possible, but what is the point of a business card to someone that isn’t going to remember meeting you. Instead, my focus is to connect with people. That is the only goal–no numbers, no goals. Simply, show up with the intention of connecting with people and learning about them. I then will setup a “learn more” meeting to get to know the people that I have connected with. At that point, if there is value in the relationship we will continue to talk about applying each other’s services or referring business to each other.
Your Networking Challenge Is Simple
I can’t believe how many people I talk to who are business professionals and want to grow their business and their networking opportunities, yet their calendar is empty. It is simple, if you want to grow your business or your network, get to know people. Stop trying to sell to people and simply have the intention of getting to know people. Then challenge yourself to create as many opportunities as possible to connect with people in a way that will make them want to get together with you.
So, go out and book “learn more” or “coffee” meetings with people in your network or people you connect with at networking events. I know you may still be looking for an excuse…so if you don’t drink coffee, book wine meetings, lunches, dinners or drink water.