I am sharing my tips for quality one-to-ones with a BNI member!
First, remember the purpose of your one-to-one meeting with fellow BNI members from your chapter or other BNIchapters.
- Build the Relationship
- Build Credibility
- Understand How to Help One Another
Build the Relationship First: When you are in a sales call, you are discussing your products or services because that is the meeting’s purpose. But in a BNI one-to-one it is an entirely different purpose; you want to build a lasting relationship and your credibility with one another. By doing this, the opportunity to refer business to one another becomes higher.
Find things you have in common with one another: If you review the GAINS Profile and use it, you could start with the “I” for Interest. When we find commonality with each other, it sets us on a friendship and opens communication, which is the first step to any good relationship.
Ask Questions and Listen: You want to remember not to dominate the conversation but share the conversation. A great way to do this is to ask the other person questions and allow them to respond while you listen; make sure your questions are open-ended and not yes or no answers. Here are a few great questions that get people to open up,
What do you like to do when you are not working in your business?
What are the biggest challenges in your business?
What is a big goal you are trying to achieve in your business?
What do you love most about what you do?
How Can I help you?
Stay away from political or religious conversations. While someone may sit across and nod while you espouse your opinion, they may well walk away and not want to refer you to their clients, family, and friends.
Take notes: Let your one-to-one partner know that you are going to jot notes down. You can also use technology for your message taking but make sure your partner knows what you are doing and not ignoring them. Be sure to make a note of what you have promised to do to help or any other offer you may have made.
Follow up: This is when you are building that essential credibility and trust with the other person. Do not promise what you cannot deliver, and if it is going to take time to make it happen, keep them informed about where you are in the process.
Ask for what you want: Before you end the meeting, make your ask or set a second meeting up with your partner to focus on your business.