top of page
  • Writer's pictureEast Bay Business Exchange

Networking One-to-Ones - How to Have a Great Meeting

When it comes to growing your business, one of the best ways is to grow by referral. Why? Referrals are more likely to do business with you because of the inherent trust they receive from your customer -- the one that referred them!

So how do you get more referrals especially if you are just starting out? One strategy is to join a business referral group and start scheduling those one-on-one meetings! Your one-to-one meetings are very important as they help you build trust and establish a relationship with a potential referral partner!

Why it's Important to Schedule Networking One-to-Ones

  1. Create more Contacts: A successful one to one meeting can keep you top of mind. Your potential referral partner is likely to think of you the next time one of their contacts ask them for a specific referral.

  2. Build Trust: By proactively scheduling and attending one-to-one meetings, your fellow members will get to know and trust you.

  3. Increase Your Knowledge: What we love about one-to-ones is the opportunity to learn something new. Your meeting is a chance to learn more about your business referral partner's industry.

Great One-to-One Meetings Ice Breakers

Connect on a personal level with the person by asking unique questions that make each person feel comfortable. Below are a few examples of easy ice breaker questions to ask:

  1. What are you passionate about outside of work?

  2. What's something on your bucket list?

  3. What book has had the biggest impact on you?

Questions to Ask

You should always do a little research before your meeting and write down anything that is interesting or you'd like to know more about. Here are some sample questions you might want to include in your networking one-to-ones.

  1. What does a typical workday look like?

  2. I noticed ____ on your [member profile, website]. Can you elaborate?

  3. What is the biggest challenge facing your organization right now?

  4. What are your top 3 goals for next [quarter, year]?

How to Stay on Point

One-to-ones can go off on tangents, so be prepared to bring the conversation back to its goal: learning how you can refer one another. Remember, your one-to-one meeting is like an informational interview. You are taking time out of your day and so is your referral partner, so try to keep the meeting within the scheduled time - unless you and your referral partner agree otherwise.

Having a strong network of local professionals can help your business grow and you grow professionally, as well. As long as you are genuine and prepared you will have a great one-to-one meeting and, hopefully, start receiving and giving referrals!


Commenting has been turned off.
bottom of page