Had an important meeting today + got anxious, sweating, light headed…has this ever happened to you? –@GonzaloGandia
Before any meeting that I care about I get very anxious. 100% of the time. This is a good thing. It makes you hyper-vigilant before and during the meeting.
Check out my post, “11 Unusual ways to be a better public speaker”. Many of those techniques apply.
But if you were going to do only two things, I’d say this:
Prepare as much as possible. If you are meeting a person from company X, learn as much as you can about the person (using google, facebook, twitter, whatever) and know everything you can about the company (history, all of their products, all of their divisions, the bio of the CEO, etc) and everything you can about the industry (the initial companies, how they merged, lost, won, etc). Final piece of preparation is the same as if you were going on TV. What is your media message? i.e. What are the three things you need to say that nobody else has ever said and you are going to say them over and over again regardless of what questions come up. You will always end up back on your media message.
Finally, how are you going to make the people in the meeting laugh. The more they laugh, the happier they will be to see you again. It’s good to think of this a little in advance how to make people laugh. I do this before every meeting. Self-deprecation is a good starting point.