Notes: you don’t need to take them, but it’s smarter if you do.
When I’m running a consulting engagement, I do my best to keep notes on our discussions. I include takeaways, next steps, and use it as a central source of truth—linking to other key documents we’re collaborating on.
It’s not just so I can remember where we left off after every call, although that’s important, too. It’s to be able to track our thought process, our progress, and get clear on our agreements after each call.
It can also be a great way to look back after 6 or 12 months, see what we accomplished, show my clients how far they’ve come (and the value of our work), and potentially even use it to write a case study when the engagement is all said and done.
There are two kinds of notes I suggest keeping: the kind you take and the kind your client takes.
If I’m writing notes, they’re for my eyes only—I don’t share them with the client and I write differently. They’re messy but they work.
If I’m working with, say, the marketing manager of my client, I’ll suggest they take notes to document our call agendas, decisions, and tangible next steps.
Call notes might seem like a burden to use, but they’re critical to running an effective advisory business, in my opinion. Even a few notes can be helpful as a reference later on, you’d be surprised.
After all, can you imagine a doctor or therapist not taking notes about your visit?
My notes template and more are included in the AdvisorOS, in case you were curious.