Status meetings. We all know how easily they can become a drudgery for everyone involved – not least your client. But don’t despair! A small change in attitude and a shift in perspective is all it takes to start turning status meetings from downright dreary to perfectly productive.
Just start with these 5 tips:
Make it personal. When you set time aside for connecting with your client, make it count. If you run through your project status quickly, get to know your client. Find out about their personal life (in an appropriate way – “Have you been to that great new restaurant yet?) or ask about their weekend plans. When you connect with your client on a personal level, the professional relationship will get stronger and less stressful.
Make it a ‘double date’. Use your status meetings as a default due date. This is especially useful for that very busy client. When your status meeting occurs on the same day that you’re requesting approvals or information, it’ll already be top of mind for the client since they know they’ll need to connect with you regardless. This double date (status and due dates) will help you keep your projects on time and on schedule.
Make time for face time.
If you can, go see your client every other week for an in-person status because sometimes being there makes all the difference. Face time helps build relationships. It can also help you dig up unexpected opportunities to help.
Always review your budgets.
This is huge. As an Account Executive, you’re always keeping an eye on budgets and hours billed so when you notice your team getting close to going over, have a conversation with your client and show them where things stand. This way things are never surprising or awkward down the road.
Set clear goals in your agenda.
Every week, update the place in your project status spreadsheet that identifies the purpose of the status. Are you looking for approval on a certain component of a project? Are you letting your client know that a due date has changed? Ensure everyone is in the loop on the ‘hot’ items for the week and that each meeting has purpose.
These 5 tips can help ensure your weekly status meeting remains an important client contact that helps everyone stay on track.
This post was written by A. Dziak, Account Executive at PUSH 22.