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Turn Virtual Coffee Meetings into Opportunities for Referrals & Collaborations: A Guide by Ines Curin

Recently, I had a virtual meeting that was both enjoyable and productive. This wasn't a stroke of luck but the outcome of deliberately changing my approach to virtual meet-ups.

Girls Talk Business Virtual Meeting

How to Make Your Virtual Meetings More Productive

In this blog, I'll reveal a few simple yet powerful adjustments that can turn your virtual coffee meetings into rich sources of referrals and collaborations. These strategies are designed to enhance the productivity of your virtual interactions, ensuring they contribute significantly to your business networking goals. The positive impact of these changes on my own virtual interactions made me realise the immense potential they hold for anyone looking to improve their virtual meeting outcomes. That's the inspiration behind my decision to share these insights with you.

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Turn Virtual Coffee Meetings into Opportunities for Referrals & Collaborations

To further assist you, I've compiled a straightforward, printable guide: "Turn Virtual Coffee Meetings into Opportunities for Referrals & Collaborations."

This guide comes with a handy checklist to streamline your preparation process, helping you establish clear objectives. While the outcome will increasing your confidence, and help you present yourself effectively in every interaction. 

To get your free guide, simply email me at 

This free guide is my way of helping you make your virtual meetings as

rewarding and productive as the ones I've enjoyed.

The Key To A Successful Virtual Meeting

Hi, my name is Ines Curin, and I'm the founder of Girls Talk Business & Beyond Small Talk. It turns out the key to successful meetings isn't just the technology used; it's the structure and intention behind them that provide us with the best results. A well-planned structure doesn’t restrict us; instead, it guides and enhances the meeting's content, creating a meaningful context for our conversations. I want to share with you several strategies that I believe will improve the outcomes of your next online meeting, helping you achieve greater success in your business interactions.

Oh, how times have changed from those in-person meetings! Now, I can set up a meeting and still be cozy in my pyjamas and slippers—at least from the waist down, just kidding, I wouldn't.

Working from home has now become the new normal, Zoom and similar platforms have become virtual conference rooms, connecting us with potential clients and colleagues worldwide.

For women in business and professionals working from home, online networking has become crucial for our success and growth. The virtual coffee catch-ups are brimming with opportunities for collaboration, and earning key referrals.

From Facebook friends to LinkedIn acquaintances, the potential for connections is endless. However, without clear structure or intent, you're likely to miss out on reaching your goals, letting potential opportunities slip through your fingers.

Setting Meeting Intentions

Pause before hitting that "Schedule" button on Zoom or whatever tool you're using, and ask yourself, "What am I aiming to achieve?" and “What is my intention?”.

My early virtual meetings often felt too casual, more like catching up with a best friend than a professional engagement. While these relaxed conversations were enjoyable and part of my journey of exploration and learning, they didn't always serve my professional goals.

Now, I recognise the importance of getting serious about clarity, particularly when it comes to setting intentions and goals for each meeting. Whether it's for networking, collaboration, seeking or offering referrals, or exploring ideas to enhance what you offer, being clear and focused from the start is crucial.

Knowing your 'why' is the key. Being clear and direct when inviting someone to a meeting is not just polite but important. A well-defined plan ensures you both understand the meeting's purpose, removing any potential for confusion.

Pre-Meeting Preparation

The adage "Fail to prepare, prepare to fail" rings true for online meetings as well. I'm not a fan of the term 'agenda'—it feels too formal, especially for casual coffee meetings. Instead, I like to think of it as setting a "plan", particularly useful when you're meeting someone for the first time.

Take a moment to learn about your meeting partner; showing real interest in their work can make a big difference. A list of topics ensures your time together is meaningful and productive, leaving both of you feeling positive about the encounter.

Time Management

Decide on the conversation's length and stick to it. Many of us can talk endlessly, but knowing where the conversation is heading is also important; otherwise, it's a journey without a destination.

Start the meeting by outlining the available time and discussion points. Personal stories can deepen conversations but shouldn't overshadow business focus. If you're prone to digression, using a timer can help maintain focus.

Conducting the Meeting

In your initial meeting, allow time for each person to express thoughts without dominating the conversation. Keep an eye on the time, periodically checking in to ensure you're both engaged and willing to continue. A straightforward approach like asking, "Are you okay to continue, or do you need to head off?" is effective in gauging the conversation's direction and brings awareness to the remaining time.

For second or third meetings, where mutual interest is clear, dedicating about

5 -10 minutes at the start for personal catch-ups can balance personal connection with professional goals.

Overemphasising personal stories at the expense of business can be frustrating, so maintaining a balance is key to forming a strong bond.

Life's unpredictability means meeting focuses can shift; communicate any changes at the start. Sharing significant personal news is okay, but deeper stories might be better shared with closer acquaintances.

Keeping the meeting engaging and focused is crucial for transforming it into a real opportunity, not just another calendar entry.

Achieving Desired Outcomes

The goal is to conclude the meeting feeling closer to your objectives and personally fulfilled. Whether securing a next step, initiating a collaboration, or earning a referral, steer the discussion towards your goals. Stay connected to your heart centre and communicate with grace.

Following up with an email to recap the conversation and express gratitude is a great way to stay in touch. Suggest ways to stay connected, like Facebook or LinkedIn, ensuring the meeting's value extends beyond the call.


Virtual coffee meetings offer a fantastic opportunity to meet new people and explore mutual interests creating new connections—when approached correctly. By adopting a structured, intention-driven approach, you're not just passing time; you're paving the way for meaningful opportunities for referrals & collaborations. This mindset will transform your anticipation of these meetings from dread to excitement, equipped with the confidence of knowing precisely what to say and achieve.

I hope this blog has shed light on the importance of careful planning and setting clear intentions for your next virtual meeting. By doing so, you're not just positioning yourself for success but also ensuring a productive and mutually beneficial experience for you and your meeting partner.

Ines x


Girls Talk Business | Beyond Small Talk

About Ines Curin

Ines Curin isn’t just about virtual meetings. Through "Girls Talk Business" and her latest initiative, "Beyond Small Talk With Ines," she’s on a mission to inspire and empower business owners and professionals. Ines helps you confidently sell your skills and authentically connect, transforming personal insights into professional triumphs.

Whether you're aiming to refine your sales skills or seeking to authentically stand out, Ines offers a unique blend of wisdom and actionable strategies. Join her and start selling from an authentic place, propelling your business and personal journey forward.

Email Ines and receive this step by step guide that will

Free Guide Turn Virtual Coffee Meetings into Opportunities for Referrals & Collaborations

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Don’t let potential partnerships or clients slip away. Take the first step towards mastering virtual selling and transforming your Zoom meetings into tools for growth and collaboration.

Let Ines Curin help you navigate the journey to authentic and impactful virtual interactions.

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