This draft agenda re a first meeting with a prospective client dates back to 2006. It’s an example of the approach I adopted when I was in practice.
I had created a number of template agendas – I chose the most appropriate one and personalised it for each meeting. This always impressed prospects as it showed I had thought about their situation beforehand – by ref to our initial telephone conversation.
The other benefit of this template was that it contained reminders of issues I needed to cover. Better that than to have them scribbled on a pad. Notice that there is no specific point for me to talk about my practice – other than at point 5. There is little point in starting such meetings with a summary of you and your firm’s background. Instead, after the briefest of intros (especially if you have a colleague or staff member with you) encourage the prospect to talk about what’s on their mind – as prompted perhaps by some of the agenda items – it’s not set in stone, just may be helpful. The items listed may also help the prospect realise that there are more issues to consider than perhaps they had previously considered.
What else might you want to add on to such an agenda? Looking back I think there’s something pretty obvious missing.
2. Issues and concerns
a. Extraction of cash
b. Maximising entitlement to Business Asset Taper Relief [Entrepreneur’s Relief now of course]
c. Potential sale in next couple of years
d. Inheritance tax (business property relief)
3. Company background
b. Annual accounting date
c. Last filed accounts
d. Premises and locations
e. Accounts and Directors Reports
4. Attitude to risk taking
a. Tax avoidance schemes
b. HMRC (Revenue) enquiries – any history?
5. How can we help?
6. The way forwards
a. Advice required to provide peace of mind
b. Terms of business and payment on account
c. ‘Know your client’ paperwork
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