How to: Present a Tax Advice Action Plan to a client
Updated: Oct 3
Do you have some Tax Advisory Opportunities, Tax Issues, or Tax Incentives that you want to share with a client? Have you got a Tax Advice action plan in your mind, that you want a client to understand and agree to? Have you completed a Tax Diagnostic Review, and it’s time to deliver the Impact Meeting?
Then this blog is for you! 🎉🎉🎉
Imagine going through all this work, only to flop at this point! It’s so important that we give ourselves the best possible chance at delivering an impactful meeting. No matter your expertise, or experience, this structure will help towards that very goal!
PS. Last month, we published a ‘How to’ blog that explained how to deliver a Tax Diagnostic Review in 4 steps. In this blog, we’re taking a deep dive into the scariest 😱, most unpredictable 🤷♂️, and most exciting 🤩 part of the process!!
⚠️ Spoiler alert ⚠️ The moral of the story is: “The more you plan the meeting, the less chance anything can go wrong.”
What is the desired outcome? 🥅
Envisioning and setting clear objectives for your meeting is always a good starting point. Sharing them with your client, too. It means everyone is joining forces towards the same goal.
For a Tax Diagnostic Review, the objective is simple: Agree to take specific actions on the tax advisory opportunities.
Map out the structure of the conversation. 📍
Give yourself a skeleton structure to keep the conversation progressing whilst staying on track. Lots of broad and varied subjects are likely to be discussed, we don’t want to slip onto a side quest or tangent. If a long tangent is rearing its ugly head, simply agree to look into that subject further as a follow-up action.
Your plan should look something like this…
Explain the purpose of the meeting (To agree on actions for the Tax Advisory Opportunities you have identified)
Recap on the Discovery Form & Client Goals Identified
Recap on how you’ve delivered a Tax Diagnostic Review
Show the Tax Diagnostic Report and highlight the number of Tax Issues identified
Show the Action Summary and explain how/why you have selected/shortlisted what you have
For each Tax Issue*…
Explain why it’s relevant to the client/the client’s goals
Explain the potential impact
Explain the next action
Agree to the action
Go over the actions for your client, yourself, and for any specialists
Schedule another meeting to catch up on progress
* To find out more on how to effectively prioritise your client's tax issues, check out our blog; where a Chartered Tax Advisor gives you the full lowdown on where to start.
Alongside this checklist-type meeting structure, make sure you prepare something client-friendly to share in advance of the meeting.
Back and forth. 🗣️
It’s so important that this plays out like a conversation.
You are introducing your client to a technical and complex subject, that could influence their habits today, and in the future.
Tax is scary. Make sure your client isn’t just saving face. We need a relaxed, open, and honest conversation that acknowledges the complexity of the subject matter.
We’re not trying to kid anyone, if something isn’t understood by the client, or you don’t feel satisfied with your explanations, then set an action to refer the advice to a specialist, or handover the subject to someone more suitable.
If you’re a Diagnostax Customer, the value in the service is that these subjects have been brought to the table, you don’t have to be an expert to introduce your client to a non-compete expert on the Diagnostax Tax Panel.
Check your client understands. Get them to explain their understanding back to you.
Check if your client has any questions. If you can’t answer the question there and then, then
your follow-up action is to look into the subject further… or refer it to a specialist!
Use your Tax Diagnostic Report and your Action Summary. 📝
Use your report to showcase the holistic, broad, and extensive work you’ve done. The client most likely won’t read it, but it gives them quantifiable proof of all the areas of tax you have explored.
Use the Action Summary as the focal point of the conversation.
Follow up, and actions. ✅
When your meeting draws to a close, send an email summarising all the actions agreed. Attach an updated Action Summary. Set a reminder to call your client up, the following day. In this impromptu call, check that they are OK with all the actions on their to-do list.
Make sure you don’t leave your meeting until you have scheduled your next one. In your next meeting, you will catch up on the progress with the actions already agreed. Having it on the calendar also gives all parties a deadline to work towards.
“Let’s complete these actions… and THEN schedule another meeting!” never… ever… works.
--------- !!! Thanks for reading!!! ----------
So, there you have it. A deep dive into how to run an impactful tax advice action plan meeting. It really is all about planning what you have to say, and then sticking to your plan.
DTX’ers, if you have any questions or want to plan a meeting with Customer Success, please book a call.