The moment you greet a prospective or new client, he begins forming his opinion of you, which could have a direct effect on your business relationship. Your confidence can help convince a client that you're the right person for their business needs, so using a firm handshake, good manners, and polite etiquette are good for business. The client may be nervous themselves, so taking charge may put them at ease.
Dress professionally. Your clothes should match the occasion. If you're at a formal event, for example, wear a suit.
Meet in a neutral, appropriate place. Greeting a prospective client for the first time in a neutral site can remove pressure for both sides, so meet somewhere you both can sit down and have a discussion without worrying about noise or eavesdroppers.
Stand up to greet your client. Shake their hand firmly, but be careful not to shake too hard. Neenjames.com recommends saying the person's name as you greet them while shaking their hand. If this is your first meeting, state your name.
Begin with polite small talk. Ask how they are. Make comments regarding where you are. If you're meeting a in coffee shop, for example, mention your favorite beverage or what you think of the seating. Prompt the person to respond. Make small talk for a few minutes to get comfortable.
End the small talk by discussing business. Maintain eye contact with your client to make them feel you are paying close attention to what they say. Answer all their questions.
Conclude the meeting with a firm handshake. The last impression should be one of confidence. At the end of the meeting, the client should be sure that their business is in safe hands.
Racheal Ambrose started writing professionally in 2007. She has worked for the minority publishing company Elite Media Group Inc., Ball Bearings online magazine, "Ball State Daily News" and "The Herald Bulletin." Her articles focus on minority and women's issues, children, crafts, housekeeping and green living. Ambrose holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Ball State University.