Posted on June 2015 By Speller International
In the past, we’ve written a lot about how to prepare for interviews (face-to-face, phone and Skype) but the type of meeting that occurs day in, day out, in your very own office is an opportunity to show your best side. They can be onsite, offsite, in a ‘meeting’ room or at the coffee shop, but every meeting is a stage just waiting for your best performance. So what is the key to bring your A game to every meeting? The answer is simple: a little preparation. As recruiters we are regularly meeting with new people, so the team at Speller have learned a few tricks over the years – read on to learn our best meeting moves.
Looking good + feeling good = meeting good
First off, consider your personal presentation. Often an outfit can project your attitude towards the importance of the meeting (not to mention rocking a great look does wonders for your confidence). So what look should you choose? Well, when you are having meetings within your role ensure you dress for the audience. If you are going on to a construction site then perhaps get rid of your suit jacket and tie.
Work that body (language)
Body language is very important in any face-to-face, eye contact, nodding to show that you are listening as well as mirroring the other person’s body language can make the person feel more comfortable. Conversely, looking bored, crossing your arms or, worst of all, rolling your eyes, can alienate people and cause issues that last well beyond just that meeting!
Know your audience
Just like in preparation for a job interview, utilise LinkedIn to find common ground – do you know the same people? Did you go to the same university? Do you have similar interests or follow the same pages? Have you worked at or know people who worked at the same companies? These all help with breaking the ice (and it is all about who you know) so don’t be afraid to start off by saying “I noticed on your LinkedIn page it says you went to Speller University! So did I! How good is their sports team?”
If you cant find information on the other members of your meeting, ask them about the company they work for. Think of some relevant questions about company strategy, projects, and other professional endeavours. Research the company website: actually go through the About Us, Contact Us, History and other pages of that type. Knowing this background info is often really important – most people will have a look, but if you can demonstrate a comprehensive understanding before a meeting it really works in your favour.
It feels good to be prepared
Whether it is for an interview or a business meeting where information needs to change hands, ensure you have prepared so that you make maximum use of the time you have with the other parties in the meeting. This will ensure that you get what you need from the meeting as well as letting the other attendees know that their time is valuable as well – this is crucial in developing lasting and fruitful relationships, so be sure to note down some questions to ask, too.
When in doubt, discuss the world
The weather should always be your last resort when conversation starts to dwindle! Read up on news that may be relevant or interesting current events that are topical and appropriate. This is where LinkedIn can really come in handy, as just scrolling through your feed on your way to a meeting will give you lots of hot topics to discuss should the conversation run dry.
Another important thing to remember is that ‘all business’ in a meeting is no fun for anyone! Show genuine interest in the other attendees as well as contributing in ways that show your personality (while remaining professional, of course).
Remember, just because it is ‘work’, meetings don’t have to be dry and dull. If you are prepared, you will feel confident, allowing you to show your amazing personality and develop lasting relationships with valuable contacts. So go forth and prepare, and you will find your time to shine before you know it!