Practice Management

How Can You Improve Your Client Progress Update Meetings as a Financial Advisor?

By  Grant Hicks

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How Can You Enhance the Value You Deliver

I hate the word review meetings, I like to call them progress update meetings. Besides renaming your meetings, also consider selecting to name the type of meeting that you’re going to have with a client.

Think of your dentist’s office and the type of appointments you have. Some appointments are for checkups, some are to do major dental work such as crown appointments, and some are for cleanings and maintenance. Your meetings can take on different types of names so the client knows what to expect at the meeting. In the spring, you have the goals and investment update meeting and in the fall a tax, estate, and portfolio update.

Names of Meetings

Advisors that I work with actually name the type of meeting they are having with clients. For example, some call them goals update and planning meetings. Other meetings focus on estate and legacy. Imagine having a legacy meeting with some of your best clients.

Are there meetings that can focus on other issues such as a go-forward plan for your portfolio for the next 12 months, comprehensive tax planning meeting with your account, risk management meeting including an insurance audit beneficiary audit other value-added services?

Emotional Engagement

Your meetings are about conversations of value. The conversations are about their goals and dreams and can be emotional. then you flip to a slide or a chart or a graph that is unemotional and unengaging. I don’t think anyone has looked at a chart or graph and said wow that looks fantastic that’s what I would like to accomplish in my life. Start using Microsoft PowerPoint with emotionally engaging pictures to tie that vision together to get people excited about their goals and dreams.

Imagine you wanted to build a new dream home and I pulled out a chart and a graph to show you how you’re going to accomplish your dream home. Or I pulled pictures of dream homes that you’ve discussed with me and then I show you sample blueprints and say is this the vision you would like for your future. tell me what you are ideal dream home would look like walk me through it, then give them a picture of what their future looks like. The charts and graphs are the technical aspects to help people get there. They are important but become less important if the client is not emotionally engaged.

Progress Update Reports

In almost every country around the world, clients have said the review meeting is not that valuable. The relationship is rock solid but the review meeting adds no value. How can you add more value to your progress update meetings?

Consider having a templated PowerPoint slide deck that can walk people through a visual of their goals and their dreams that updates the conversations in an emotionally compelling way. Once clients have an enhanced experience like that, your progress update meetings get better and more efficient for you and them and can be done and delivered in less time.

Practice management is about three things: process, process, process. Isn’t it time you enhanced your process for progress update meetings for your clients? What value will you add to your best clients this year through your progress update meetings? How will you deliver it in an emotionally compelling way and how will you deliver it online in less time and deliver more value?

This is what elite advisors are doing to deliver more value to their existing clients and gain more referrals. They have a process, an agenda, a PowerPoint, a script and are not winging it. Start by naming your types of meetings, delivering more valuable conversations, naming those types of conversations, and adding PowerPoint with pictures to visually engage them. Go for it and see the difference in your client’s reaction and body language the next time you have a progress update meeting for them. Especially if you run a majority of your meetings virtual. 

Preparation and Follow-up

What is your meeting preparation process? How long does it take you and your team to prepare for a client progress update meeting? Do you have a checklist of items that you go through before a meeting? How can you make the process better? These are standard questions I ask every financial advisory team. In every instance, there is a process that can be improved.

First, build your checklist of the key items and process that goes into an ideal client meeting. Second, having technology makes the process efficient. Have a templated process using technology. Your administration staff goes through the online preparation checklist, completes the work, and sends it over to you at least 2-5 days before the meeting. Then you have your scheduled 15-minute discussion with staff to go over your 50-100 point checklist to cover all administration and potential paperwork issues.

You also go over the PowerPoint and lock it down as a pdf file. Then you record the meeting with the client’s permission, of course, complete the file notes in the checklist and all administration and follow up and send the recording, notes, and tasks and have your administration manager complete and assign all tasks in your system to you and your team. The key is templates and technology.

It is 2022 so a future-ready technology-driven practice has a detailed 100 point or more process from an administrative and planning side, and an emotionally engaging process from your ideal clients. This makes your process all about their complete financial life and comprehensive wealth management and financial planning. Do you need to work on your processes?

Checklist on Your Process

Create your own detailed checklist for you and your team “How to Prepare for an ideal client progress update meeting in 2022” and a list of items to prepare for the meeting, delivering more value at the meeting and the follow-up process this year.

How about your goals for your practice in 2022? Our practice management resources are below.   


  • Key processes to finding and acquiring more ideal clients for financial advisors.
  • How to enhance your offers and your value promise.
  • Blog on the best practice management strategies to help you manage and build your financial advisor practice and team.

We are here to serve your practice, let’s talk.

Contact us to help get clarity around your goals on paper, and have the goals conversation by contacting Grant at or click on the link to set up a no-obligation 20-minute discussion. Regardless if we work together, let’s have a chat and listen to your biggest practice management concerns to help you get clarity around your future business.

About the Author

Grant Hicks, President, Advisor Practice Management

Grant Hicks, CIM, is President of Advisor Practice Management and co-author of “Guerrilla Marketing For Financial Advisors” 1st and 2nd edition. For speaking, workshops, or coaching, contact Grant at

Grant’s combined financial advisor clients manage over 5 billion AUM and earn over $50 million dollars combined!  

To make Wealthtender free for readers, we earn money from advertisers, including financial professionals and firms that pay to be featured. This creates a conflict of interest when we favor their promotion over others. Learn more. Wealthtender is not a client of these financial services providers.
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