So You Want to Run the Client Meeting (Part 3) | Jerome Shore

So You Want to Run the Client Meeting (Part 3) | Jerome Shore

3 March, 2020

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]So You Want to Run the Client Meeting [part 3]
Jerome Shore
This is the third part of an article aimed at associates in law firms who want to break out from the need to sit behind partners at client meetings and instead manage client meetings on their own. In Part 1 we covered Body Language and Building Rapport. In Part 2 we covered Listening and Acting on Purpose. In this part we address Constructive Discontent and Dialing in Your Ego.
Use Constructive Discontent. This is the ability to make progress in the face of disagreement or conflict by staying calm, focused and emotionally grounded. In these situations, maintaining open, firm body language and using your voice confidently rather than emotionally is important. This creates a critical difference in the way your listener receives your message.  Building awareness of your own voice, when it is confident, will support learning to connect and have an impact.
To employ constructive discontent, when there’s an issue, open yourself up to learn by asking questions or asking for clarification. This, once again, is listening to learn rather than to win or fix. So you’re trying to manage the issue by taking the disagreement on your shoulders, by highlighting it, asking questions to get more information all towards getting a best answer.
In the workplace, teams that tolerate disagreement or conflict calmly, tend to be the highest performing teams.
With constructive discontent you’re trying to offset destructive contentment which is coming to an agreement too quickly such that the right thing is not done. Constructive discontent is a way to show that you want to avoid potential problems even if it causes you some extra work.
Dialing in Your Ego. You can be over or under confident in a relationship or in a meeting. Either way can get you faulty results.
It’s hard to get things done. You need your ego to activate ‘executive actions’ that ignite a plan or strategy. Your ego says to you that it is time to get going. But, that has to be managed so that your role is appropriate to what needs to get done. This can be over or undermanaged.
When you’re feeling uncomfortable during tense moments ask yourself ‘How right do I have to be?’ You can ask that question about aspects of disagreements or the totality of the disagreement. So sometimes if it isn’t a ‘must’ for you to be right in this moment in the discussion you may lose a ‘want’ but move closer to winning your position.
Be aware of the Say Do Gap. A valid Say Do Gap is charismatic. You get to be known for fulfilling commitments; for reliability in actions that you take repeatedly and for validity in what you say. You present a serious outside point of view that is well considered and delivered because you’ve thought it out in advance.
When your Say Do Gap is narrow you won’t make it up as you go. When you’re engaged in what you do you’ll find it easy to plan meetings ahead of time to know what the hot buttons will be and how you will handle them. If planning ahead doesn’t come to you comfortably you must work hard to do that planning. [Hard work is not long hours. Hard work is doing things that are hard to do; like planning ahead when you’ve got something more pleasurable to do.]
So, those are hints to using Constructive Discontent and Dialing in your ego. In Part 1 of this article we covered  Body Language and Building Rapport. In Part 2 we covered Listening and Acting on Purpose.
We would be delighted to hear your thoughts on these meeting management principles.
Jerome Shore is an Executive Coach in Toronto, Canada. Clients to look to Jerome for help with Marketing, Leadership and Stress Management. He can be reached or 1-416-787-5555.
Tessa Desatnik is a communication coach and Director with the Circle & Square practice of the Farber Group. She can be reached at or 1-416-704-3884[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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