You have one minute to convince me to stay!!!


In corporate world people have less time to sit on meetings and less time to do business. I was once late for an interview because of the traffic and my interviewer said:

“You have one minute to convince me to stay!”

He was mad. No wonder, he was running a quickly growing private bank back in those days, and had a tight schedule on that day (and on any other day as well). I got a chance! A valuable 1 minute of the busy businessman.

“Let me walk you to your other meeting and use actively those 60 seconds” I said and started walking towards the office exit. My heart was beating fast and my inner voice was screaming “you are stupid, stooooop, stooooop, don’t turn your back on this guy”, but it was already done and I was standing at the open door waiting for the guy to react. We got in the car and spoke during the 20-minute ride to another office.

I didn’t get the job at that time as I was too inexperienced (just after 3rd out of 5 years of my university). However, I got a call from him a year later. I was asked to build a short training regarding negotiations and communication with clients.

On that day this one, bold minute of mine changed into a student project.

But since then I learned that in just one minute you can get what you want or loose it forever. It is only your choice how you will manage it. For example: you are just on the way out from the networking meeting but one person just says “You are leaving? I just wanted to speak to you briefly and you were so busy before with others.” If you really don’t have any urgent meeting, you can stay for that one minute more and listen to this person. That is how a great business relationship can be build. You won’t know it until you stay.

For how long? – you may ask.

Just for 1 minute! It would be enough to know the value of the conversation. Afterwards you can always excuse yourself.

I wonder how you value a minute of your life and business and what you do when someone challenges you with a question:

“Do you have a minute?”

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