I’ll never forget the terrified feeling I had as the two people sat expectantly in my living room waiting for me to do my presentation. I had a suit on and my flip chart was filled to the brim with all the information I was going to say. The rest of the story is pretty comical, but for now suffice it to say, this is a lot different in every way than now…23 years later.
I know first hand that the idea of doing a presentation in front of a group, even a small one from home can be a scary idea. Yet, meetings are important to have and beneficial for everyone, and they are pretty easy to do. Yes, in today’s fast paced world it is harder to get people to come to a meeting about your business, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore this tool.
The power to a meeting is the actual gathering of people. You do not have to be a good presenter to have an effective meeting. The key is to just be yourself. Start small with just a few people that you invite. Let them know that there will be no pressure and that you just want to share your wonderful business with them. Yes, some people will say no, some will say maybe, and some will say definitely. When you hear these respective answers, you need to hear…in order, no, no, maybe. Anything other than a definite is a no, and a definite is a maybe. This is just the way it is.
Don’t do anything fancy. Don’t dress up. Just sit around and tell the story about what you found and invite open discussion. This will work really well with a few people. As you continue to do them and the number of people grows, then you can formalize it a little more, and at this time you will be ready to formalize it. In other words, maybe it will start with you and 2 or 3 people. As you sponsor a few people, they can now come and also bring someone. While there is still 5 or 6 of you, the informal approach will still work well. Once it grows to 10 to 12, you might need to be a little organized, but now you have others who have been with you long enough where they can contribute as well.
You can tell your story, have a few others tell their stories and then share the main points of your company. You can do the more formal part through a video or a simple flip chart that you scribble on. The energy and the community of doing a consistent meeting become something that your group will look forward to. As you involve them they can then see themselves as able to start one of there own.
A great model for this is how churches are grown. They start, often times, in someone’s home, and after they get big enough they move to a location. The location becomes the Sunday meeting and the through the week there are small groups meeting in homes to share the message and grow the church.
Once you have a group that is doing multiple small meetings a month besides the one that you do, then you know the time is right to host a bigger event in a central location where everyone can get together.
If you are serious about growing a big business you should definitely include the meeting component. Yes, you can do a majority of the business in this day and age through the phone, internet, webinars, and conference calls…but there is nothing like the impact of a meeting.