Approaching Senior Executives: 5 Tips
Aditi Ramchandani asks Jasbina Ahluwalia: I really like that last one. It is really powerful. You want to imagine the other person to be the gatekeeper to your destiny. That will allow people to be very open-minded when meeting different people.
It’s very easy to miss one or two people here and there. For me, it’s happened before where I didn’t expect to connect with someone but I just happened to. It ended up being a very powerful relationship later down the line. That’s a great point.
How about when there are senior executives in the room? I know that many people tend to be intimidated.
They may not know how to approach a senior executive. They may not know what to say or how to carry the conversation. The points that you made about making a lasting first impression could also be used when speaking to senior executives.
Approaching Senior Executives
To take it to another level, do you have a different type of approach when it comes to senior executives?
Do you have any suggestions on how to approach them and what to say?
Approaching Senior Executives:
- Be Prepared.
- Time Sensitive.
- Be Confident.
- Continue the Conversation.
I think that everything we just discussed with respect to lasting first impressions will go a long way with senior executives as well.
Approaching Senior Executives: Be Prepared
In addition, when we’re talking about senior executives, you want to be prepared.
What do I mean by that? Before attending an event, it’s worth Googling those executives who you anticipate will be in attendance and you would most like to meet.
Identify those individuals and Google them.
Find out things such as the schools that they went to, the causes they support and whether or not they have kids.
This will do two things.
- It will remind you that the senior executives are people, too.
- When you meet, it will allow you to ask questions about things that they care about, like causes or kids.
Approaching Senior Executives: Time Sensitive
Another important thing to keep in mind when approaching a senior executive is that they tend to be extremely selective with their time.
There are those who will only speak with people who they already know or who are recommended to them.
Approaching Senior Executives: Introduction
If you can seek a warm introduction, that is always helpful.
By “warm introduction,” I mean that you should try to find someone you know who also knows the executive and can introduce you to them. That will most likely be well-received.
Approaching Senior Executives: Be Confident
Let’s say that you identify the person who can give you the warm introduction and you are engaged with the senior executive. Senior executives will generally ask you questions to learn what you think and where you’re headed.
Being able to confidently respond to these questions can be really important.
I would consider these conversations as ad hoc interviews. Be on the ball.
Approaching Senior Executives: Continue the Conversation
I’ve noticed that people put too much pressure on the situation. They think that, once they finally have that senior executive’s attention, they need to say everything else that they have to say in that very first encounter.
It’s more effective to recognize that, sometimes giving a good first impression and figuring out how to continue that conversation in the future is the most effective goal of the first encounter.
You don’t want to feel that everything needs to be laid out because you may not get that opportunity again.
Keeping those things in mind will be well serving when you’re networking with senior executives.
Will you use these tips when approaching senior executives in the work place? What tip has been most impressionable? Share with us in the comments section below.
The above is an excerpt from Aditi’s interview with Jasbina Ahluwalia.
The entire interview transcript is at: Jasbina Ahluwalia NetIP (Network of Indian Professionals) Interview – How to Network in Any Setting
Listen to the entire interview on: Intersections Match Talk Radio – Jasbina’s Lifestyle Show