Starting a meeting is always hard for me. I never know what to say to get things rolling and set the tone. It's always the same "How's it going?" boring mumbo jumbo. "It's raining here in Michigan, what's the weather like where you are?"
Who has time for that?
I've been known to just jump in to the meat of the meeting without building any rapport. My excuse is that "people are busy and don't have time for that." Unfortunately, not building rapport makes it much more difficult to make a strong connection with someone.
LinkedIn can help avoid the awkward first part of the meeting.
Now, before I meet with someone, I check out their LinkedIn profile. You might be surprised at the nuggets you can find - even if the person doesn't use LinkedIn that much.There could be a wealth of information on there that can help you establish rapport and understand the needs of the person you are meeting with.
It feels really good to go into a meeting having a few rapport builder ideas in my pocket!
Watch this 1 minute video to see what I learned as I recently prepared for meeting with an important person.