Carol, one of my clients, called today. She asked about how to invite a business acquaintance to lunch.
Before answering, I asked a few questions to probe a little bit about the nature of the relationship. I soon learned Carol did not know the person. Her goal was to build the relationship over lunch.
I suggested she offer both coffee and lunch options on different dates. In this way, you give the other person “control” over the time and level of commitment. Then, as you build and strengthen the relationship, you’ll be able to invite the other person to lunch every time.
Coffee is perceived as low risk for a “wasted time” and low commitment as the time could be 20 to 30 minutes. Lunch is perceived as a medium risk and a medium commitment of at least an hour. And most importantly, you HAVE to stay for the entire meal. You can’t leave after 20 to 30 minutes like you can with a coffee meeting.
Carol would be able to get to know this person better with coffee or lunch.
My tip then, always offer both a coffee and lunch option.
ADDITIONAL COMMUNICATION AND STORYTELLING TIPS
- Avoid the Word Anxious – It Reduces Your Effectiveness
- Master the Art of Active Listening
- Add Dramatic Effect to Your Stories with Slight Changes to Your Body Language
Photography Source: Unsplash