Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Bringing Yourself to a Meeting

I had a meeting today with a new player in the Orange County marketplace. Michele Bassett is an executive recruiter who knows how to do her homework about a market, the people in it, and most importantly, how to be a real person in a conversation. This last point is what I like witnessing in action.

I met Michele briefly at a reception a few weeks ago and we set up a sitdown meeting for this afternoon. Within 30 minutes of sitting down she had me talking about things beyond business. We talked about aspirations, personal goals, the difference between men and women in the workplace and semi-personal things around life and living! In less than 90 minutes she had helped our acquaintance become a friendship.

It felt honest and natural; not manipulated. This was exactly how I believe good business relationships should develop. Honest, fun, and open.

The lesson here is that meeting people... and starting a business relationship does not have to be about missions and capabilities or, what can we do for each other? Every great business relationship I have started like a good friendship and if more people understood that there would be a lot less stress circling around business development.