COVID-19 has kept many of us quarantined at home with our immediate families.
But that doesn't have to stop us from meeting new people.
Earlier this week, I had four amazing "virtual coffee connects" with people I had never met before.
The four meetings were all with interesting people who had reached out to me on LinkedIn. (Backstory: in addition to publishing this newsletter, I share a lot on LinkedIn. Because I have a lot of LinkedIn followers, sometimes what I write gets a lot of views, and that tends to lead to a lot of connection requests. One of my many quirks is that I won't connect with someone on LinkedIn who I don't actually know, but when the person sending me the request is local and it seems like we might have a few things in common, I'll ask if they're interested in meeting for coffee.)
Pre-COVID, I'd schedule a "coffee day" downtown once or twice a month. If you're an efficient scheduler -- as I tend to be -- you can find yourself a table at your favourite coffee shop, sit down for a few consecutive hours, and have people meet you one after the other. (I pay rent for my seat with multiple coffee purchases. Fortunately, I have a very high caffeine tolerance.)
In-person "coffee connect" meetings aren't possible these days.
But we have Zoom.
After all, the coffee isn't the point anyway. It's the "connect" that matters.
All you need is a willingness to put yourself out there and ask.