This is a continuation of my blog post Part 1 –
So, you’ve been doing your homework and found a person or two, the decision makers that you would like to meet.
These individuals are much higher in the food chain than you are, are well respected in their field, and have written, or spoken, extensively.
In other words, approaching them seems a bit intimidating.
All the more reason to “cowboy” up and make the first move.
Okay, how do you approach them and what do you say?
• Start reading articles they’ve authored and reviews of their work in industry publications. If you don’t have time to read book(s), that’s fine, articles will do.
• I’m assuming you are in the same industry, or a similar industry, and understand the technical lingo that goes with it. Read the articles with an analytical mind and summarize one, or two, key points in each article.
• Then write down your comments about their points or conclusions. Do you agree? Why? Do you disagree? Why? If you disagree, you’d better have a solid case and very good alternate conclusions.
• Draft a letter that you will snail mail, first citing the article(s) that caught your eye and then offering your comments (agreeing or disagreeing) but making your case in a polite and collegial way.
• In your letter, suggest a brief coffee date to discuss further.
• The letter should be flattering, but not overly so.
• In the final paragraph of the letter, state that you will be calling to see if you can set up a brief meeting.
• Do not enclose your resume or discuss your job search.
• You can enclose a business card.
Most recipients and decision makers will be pleased that you took the time to read, analyze and comment on their article. For instance, I’ve always received a reply when I write an editor about a newspaper story.
Wait a few days and call to follow-up. Then you might try calling one more time if you don’t receive a reply.
By the way, this method has been successful for many of my clients.
So, you’ve got the meeting you want. How do you prepare and what do you say during the meeting?
Stay tuned for tips in next week’s blog…