Have you experienced meetings with potential or existing clients where you think the meeting was great, but you suspect that you may have missed a few points?

Increasingly we are working remotely; before Covid, I used to zoom occasionally, but the lockdown made Zoom and Team meetings a standard way of doing business.

This new way of working has its challenges – zoom fatigue being one of them – but it has also brought one surprising benefit – the value of listening to previous recordings as a form of development:

1. You miss things you think you’ll remember – as with reading a book or seeing a film for the 2nd time, there’s always something you did not catch the first time.

2. It can be invaluable in preparation for future meetings or follow-up notes, demonstrating how much you’ve been listening. You can serve clients better, and they will be impressed by your memory of the detail.

3. You’ll notice your behaviours – expressions, where you didn’t listen, how to say things differently. Do you talk too much? Interrupt? Do you need to be more focused and allow the conversation to stay on track? Who is managing the conversation – you or the client?

I didn’t realise how much my eyes looked up to the sky during conversations, it was as if the sky would give me an answer, and it made me think about what message I was conveying to potential clients – confidence or lack of it?

4. You get to see if you sheepishly or confidently ask for the business or not at all. Listening helps you to communicate better and improve how you close sales.

5. How much rapport did you and the client have during the meeting?

6. Feedback on your overall performance – you may have left the meeting thinking it was a good session – but was it? Let the recording decide.

I often go back and listen to recordings of my meetings with existing and prospective clients, and it has been a critical proponent of how I’ve learned to improve.

Professional speakers and performers record themselves, but this practice should not be exclusive to them.

Listen to some of your previous recordings and see what you learn.