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for advisers and leaders in financial advice

  • Writer's pictureJason Dunn


Communicate effectively or you might as well be talking to the wall…

In my last GROW Adviser Best Practice Action, I wrote about the importance of effective communication and gave some simple examples of how we can easily miscommunicate, and not know we are doing so.

So let’s look briefly at some of the things you can do to avoid common miscommunication.

The top of the list is to choose your words carefully. Use simple words and as few as possible to deliver the message you want. Speak naturally. Don’t overcomplicate your message with supposedly sophisticated vocabulary. It’s unnecessary and annoying.

Be careful making assumptions, and if you do, test and validate them – I have covered this in previous Best Practice Actions.

Ask open-ended questions and have some key questions prepared before every prospect or client meeting.

Listen more than you speak (a lot more!), listen to understand rather than to respond, and always check for understanding. One of my favourite sayings is “you never learn when you are talking”. You can do this by asking confirmation questions that can be as simple as: “Does that make sense?” “Have I explained that clearly enough?” or “Is there any more detail I can give you about…?” or similar.

Ensure your body language is congruent with your spoken words and that you use the appropriate tone and manner in your delivery.

Don’t be distracted when in your conversation and give the other person your full attention.

And take notes and use a summary of your notes in discussion with your prospect or client to clarify what you have recorded.

Developing exceptional communication skills is a core component and focus of our GROW Adviser Capability program.

Keep an eye out for my next article:

“Characteristics of high-performing financial advisers"

What will you do differently to improve your communication with prospects and clients and reduce the chances of miscommunication?

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