Photo by Jan Kahánek on Unsplash

No Notes

Taking notes changes the tone of the meeting, in a negative way.

This is the first of a series of articles I will be writing for those of you who are investment advisors.

A fundamental tenet of the Solin Process℠ is the importance of getting to know your prospect.  You do that by empowering the prospect to talk, and not by talking about yourself, your firm or your expertise.

As part of this process, I advise you not to take notes in the first meeting.  This advice generates a lot of pushback.  Here’s why I believe it’s so important.

Your first date

Think about your first date.  Did you take notes?  Of course not.  Did you forget anything important?  I doubt it.

Taking notes changes the tone of the meeting, in a negative way.  It impedes the natural flow of conversation.  It makes it difficult to establish an emotional connection with the prospect, which is the goal of the first meeting.

You’ll remember

Advisors resist this suggestion because they fear they’ll forget something important.  Steve Jobs summarized his views on note taking, as follows:  If it’s important, you’ll remember it.

You can dictate notes immediately after the meeting.  You’ll be amazed at how much you’ll remember.

You may find comfort in the experience of Justin Hartner, who runs a website design firm.  He abandoned the practice of taking notes at meetings.   Today, I don’t even own a notepad. When I go to meetings I bring myself, I shake hands, sit down, kick back, give input, and listen. I’m better off for it.

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