How typical is this? I’d say fairly. A crew I know were due to meet a major client boss. They lived on another continent, so it was deemed a once-in-a-blue-moon chance to get to know the bigwig.
The account owner had prepared a large slideshow. It featured slide after slide of info-dumping. Proudly adding layers of detail onto the traditional ‘corporate overview’. Even getting forensic about items like net promoter scores.
When having an internal chat to ‘go through the prez’, the most senior person thankfully realised this approached was deeply flawed.
what do we know about their business?
…was his simple question. Not a fat lot, was the answer.
So, the eventual meeting began with an invitation to talk about where the client was now and where they were headed.
An incredibly fruitful three hours evidently followed. Without a single slide being shown. Regular follow-up contact plans duly arranged.
All sorts of key issues arose, from new market service delivery to handling corruption in daunting locales.
Yes, in a way they were lucky to encounter such a willingly garrulous client. Yet it remains another reminder that your meetings, especially first-timers, should be all about them, not about you.