With a new year on the horizon, running planning sessions with our retainer clients is a top priority. Whether or not the client's contract is coming to a close in December, it is an opportunity for both teams to zoom out, align on objectives, and discuss opportunities to work together more effectively. It also helps us project how much a client will spend with us in the coming year.
We created a template to guide this year's sessions. The Account Lead will be working with the project team to prepare. The deck covers the following areas:
- Recap of work we've done this year: an opportunity to celebrate accomplishments and show our value-add as a partner
- Feedback discussion on ways of working: an open discussion between both teams, using curated topics to prompt discussion
- Future business initiatives/priorities for 2023 (presented by the client): a chance to dig into what's top of mind for the client and why
- Opportunities we see for the future (presented by Barrel): ideas we have to help the client achieve their goals (may or may not be on their radar)
As we start getting these sessions on the calendar, there are a few open items I'll be discussing with our Director of Client Services, Kate, this week.
- Pre-sending clients' future business initiatives: What is the best way to surface their initiatives earlier so the team can digest them when planning for the session? We want to ensure any ideas we bring to the table are relevant to the client's plans for the coming year.
- Preparing for the meeting: We are discussing how to format internal preparation sessions with the project team. Assuming we have gathered priorities from the client, we see this as an opportunity to reflect on the year as a team and brainstorm how we can increase our value and strengthen our collaboration with the client in the new year.
This post originally appeared in Edition No. 114 of my newsletter. Subscribe here.
Monday, November 14, 2022