Have a purpose.
State a purpose.
Execute on that purpose.
This means you know what success looks like for you, and you actually say it out loud to the person you’re meeting with. For example:
“I want to make sure we cover these three topics.”
“I wanted to connect because I really want to understand ________ from your perspective.”
“I’m hoping that by the end of this meeting we will finalize the partnership we’ve been discussing for the past six weeks, and that your company will commit to $1M of funding towards that partnership.”
I’m surprised how rare it is to hear people actually articulate their goals for a meeting. Especially fundraisers. Doing so doesn’t make you pushy, it makes you clear and effective.