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for advisers and leaders in financial advice

  • Writer's pictureJason Dunn


People often tend to get nervous when there’s something unknown waiting for them.

A meeting agenda helps allay any fear of the unknown and creates clarity.

An agenda can also be utilised to incorporate key questions that you want to ask your prospect or client, which demonstrates that you are well prepared and that your prospect or client feels important immediately. Additionally, this is an excellent practice when you are implementing new discovery techniques to ensure you ask new, highly effective questions.

Too many meetings begin without every participant having a clear idea of what it’s actually about.

Surprising, but often true. Although you may be clear on the purpose of the meeting, how you believe it will likely progress, and the outcome you’re working towards, it will be difficult for you to know how the other participants (your client or prospect) view the meeting, unless you raise these key points. And they will most likely sit there contemplating the things that are important or pressing for them.

Often the people that you meet with will not understand the purpose of the meeting, what is expected of them, what you want to know, why you want to know, what’s going to happen next, what happens after the meeting, and who will do what.

In fact, my experience of observing thousands of meetings where the basics are not outlined clearly and agreed upon is that most participants are not as engaged as they should be and that often issues arise later in the meeting, out of the blue, which derail the meeting and lead to poor outcomes.

An agenda is an essential element of any meeting and sets up the foundation of a successful discussion, along with establishing the level of engagement you want from your prospect or client.

An agenda should be in written form, but it does not need to be complex.

In most cases, it can be a simple list of the key points to be covered. It may also include key questions that you want to ask and let your prospect or client know that you have prepared them specifically for the meeting – even if you consistently use the same questions.

Positively, it takes little time to prepare an agenda, but it will make a significant difference in how you engage your prospect or client.

There are several options and some simple, but critical, powerful elements of an effective agenda, which we’ll cover in future GROW Best Practice Actions.

Keep an eye out for my next article:

“What does an effective agenda look like?”

If you’re not already doing this, prepare a brief written agenda of key points to use when you open your next prospect/client meeting, show it to your prospect/client at the beginning of the meeting and see what difference it makes.

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