Every day, you have the opportunity to do something wonderful for your clients. Most successful advisors I know are always trying to find the extraordinary breakthrough that allows them to serve their clients better. Sometimes that breakthrough is simply the broad perspective and experience they offer to their clients as they guide them to reach prudent decisions.

In any set of circumstances your clients face, their own perspective will determine their response unless you are there to guide them. Therefore, it is vital that you allow them to share with you their core concerns, needs, and feelings at your client meetings.

I would strongly suggest meeting with your clients at least quarterly to stay focused on their needs and address any changes that may have occurred.In most cases, these reviews uncover additional areas in which you can do business with your clients.

Here are 10 questions to consider as you prepare for the meetings:

  • What have they liked most and least about past investments they have made?
  • What problems do they have that you can help them solve?
  • What needs do they currently have?
  • What solutions can you offer?
  • What are their hopes and fears and how have they changed?
  • What questions do they have?
  • What do they already think or know about what you’ll discuss?
  • Who is the driving force behind the decisions?
  • What outcome would they like to see?
  • How easy will it be for them to stick to the plan that you put together for them?

My experience as a retail advisor and my experience working with advisors and their clients over the years has made me appreciate that the time spent getting answers to these questions will build trust and solidify the relationship with your client. It will allow you to provide a higher level of service that focuses on their needs, wants, and goals.

As an advisor, you are in a unique position to influence your clients and give them important reasons to change a habit–the way they save, for example– that will make a huge difference in their lives.People who feel like they’re being listened to feel accepted and appreciated. They feel like they’re being taken seriously and what they say matters.

Once they have explained their situation to you, their advisor, most clients just want you to tell them what to do. It’s usually as simple as that.