I get a lot of requests to meet for coffee or for a “pick my brain” chat. My time is valuable to me (as is yours!) and so the best conversations are ones that have a clear purpose and have expected outcomes that I can actually deliver on. I may not be the best person, and I don’t want either of us to waste our time.
Be sure to include the following in your email meeting request:
- Why you want to meet with me and what outcomes you’re looking for (see below for ideas)
- 3 meeting times (Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday between 10am-7pm are best) that work for you for me to choose from
- A number/Skype ID to call you at. I spend most of my time outside of Vancouver so it’s trickier to meet in person.
How do you hope meeting with me will benefit you?
Are you looking for consulting-related advice? My mind pays for food and a roof over my head, and I generally don’t give strategic advice away for free. If you want to get to know me a bit better for a potential paid contract, be clear that you actually have a budget, and I’m happy to have an initial conversation to help us determine if we’re a good fit for each other.
Are you looking for a job? Do you want me to connect you to someone? Are you looking for confirmation that you career plans aren’t crazy? Are you looking for job search advice? Career development advice?
Depending on your interests I may not be the best person, so based on your objectives I may recommend someone else to you.
Are you looking to meet with someone like-minded to have a good chat? Have a deep discussion about a topic of mutual interest? Explore opportunities to collaborate? What outcome are you hoping to achieve?
How do you expect meeting with me will benefit me?
Sometimes a meeting is valuable for me for a reason as simple as connecting with a bright mind. Extras are a bonus.