5 Reasons You Need 50 Coffee Meetings

I’ve always been a big believer in the theory that it takes 3 cups of coffee to truly get to know someone. The first cup is an interview.

Latte Coffee Art Image

The second cup is a “date”. The third cup is where people take off the blinders and let you get to know the real them. So, if you know me then you know that I am not only a tea snob but a coffee addict as well. That’s why when I read the advice that you need 50 coffee meetings, I was hooked. Tea is great but coffee is awesome!

So what exactly does one mean when they say you need 50 coffee meetings? If you think about it, this is a simple method for remembering the human equation in engagement. There is a direct correlation between the human progress (engagement) demonstrated in a single cup of coffee but if you multiply that by 50 coffee meetings or more in a year, you build relationship-focused connections that lead to true success.

Let’s take this a step further and see how it works with 5 Reasons You Need to Take 50 Coffee Meetings.

1. On the Job Hunt.
If you’re looking for a job, then you should never turn down the invitation to have a cup of coffee with someone. It’s not all about searching online careers boards and shipping out hundreds of resumes anymore. Everyone knows everyone else and networking is king of the job search. Think of a coffee meeting as your informational interview. Meeting people over a cup of coffee opens opportunities to meet other people that they can introduce you to in their network. A cup of coffee leads to talks about what you are currently doing, what you are looking for and what you are passionate about. You remind them of someone else they know and soon enough you’re having your next cup of coffee with the president of your dream company. Don’t sit around and wait for the job boards to get you that perfect job – lead with a cup of coffee.

2. Recruiting.
You may be a business owner, entrepreneur or even a volunteer. Whatever your title, there are times when you need help from someone with more experience or better skills and this is the time when you need to grab that cup of coffee. You should always have a diverse network of people that you can call to get the job done. Building such a network takes time – and a lot of coffee. Don’t wait until the need is there. Build your network today and, when the need arises, you can call on that person to grab another cup of coffee to discuss how they can help you be successful in whatever journey you have ahead.

3. Build Press.
Well-networked people are like gold but when you are able to have coffee with journalists and media moguls, you are networked with Midas himself. Most journalists want to genuinely help others and they absolutely love coffee. Grabbing a cup of “joe” helps to build a strong relationship and allows the journalists to get to know you on a more personal level. They want to know what makes you tick and it’s the passions that lay beyond the rim of a coffee cup that open doors to help tell your story.

4. Raise that Money.
When you meet with people for coffee, you begin to build a long-standing relationship. Sometimes it takes a couple of cups and other times it can be fifty cups. However, when you need the help of angels and venture capitals (VC), these long standing relationships help to secure the deal. No one wants to work with someone they don’t know, like or trust. Coffee meetings build all three areas.

5. Understand Your Customer.
Get out of the office and grab that cup of coffee! Sometimes it takes a simple disconnect from the hum of the office lights to help you see clearer and stoke the fires of innovation. When you leave the office to grab a cup of coffee, you start to see the world in a different light. Make a cup of coffee into a meeting and watch as the creativity flows from those you, which are sharing your coffee.

When you begin to shift your thinking from coffee meetings as distractions to outlets for creativity, success is never far behind. It may take three cups of tea to get to know a single person but with 50 coffee meetings under your belt, just think about the possibilities for human engagement and your overall success.

Enjoy coffee meetings. Never eat lunch alone. (click to tweet)

Now get out of that chair and make it happen!

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Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Raúl Colón

    I love coffee although I have been trying to reduce my coffee intake lately.

    I use coffee to keep warm my good relationships online. I normally mail Puerto Rican Coffee to them via mail.

    As for drinking a cup of coffee I run into the other part. That person that wants to pick my brain for the price of the cup of coffee. So I try to have coffee only with those I know value me and what I do.

    What is your take on those Coffee Invites where the purpose is to pick your brain at the cost of a cup?

    • Shannon Steffen

      The “picking of the brain” has to be handled on a case-by-case basis. There are many people that I don’t mind meeting – knowing they are there to pick my brain for free. These are my friends, family and trusted business peers. However, you do run into a few that take your time for granted. In those cases, it is best to request an agenda before the meeting, stating “I respect that your time is valuable and therefore it would be best if we had an agenda for our meeting.” This allows you the freedom to request an agenda while being respectful of both schedules. Most times, if they are there to pick your brain, they will not follow through with the meeting if an agenda is requested.