An Introduction to Formal Business Meetings: Before, During, and After

By Frank LaRosa

Preparation remains one of the key elements for walking in to and out of any meeting with confidence. With the right preparation, financial professionals can make a good impression on potential business partners or employers, providing an accurate representation of their skills.

Before a meeting, spend time researching all the individuals who will be present, including their professional histories and their likes and dislikes. Any insight on how these individuals interview candidates will prove extremely helpful. In addition, always allow plenty of extra travel time before a meeting: arriving late results in a poor assessment.

When meeting new business partners, you must understand the culture of the business that they conduct and conform to those expectations. Knowledge of the firm’s work environment also helps an interviewee appear to be an ideal fit. Preparation also involves thinking about and rehearsing your responses to probable questions and considering what questions you want to ask the interviewers.

During the meeting, remain calm and relaxed. Remember that in many respects, you’re conducting your own interview of a prospective employer or business partner. During the meeting, concentrate equally on your past accomplishments and future plans. However, in many instances it is improper to discuss specifics of a deal during the initial meeting. These business conversations—including numbers such as salaries—should come later in time. In general, this practice results in a better deal.

Instead, inquire about the process of moving forward if you are both still interested. Also, make it easy for your interviewer to contact you by offering up your business card. After a meeting, send your interviewers a quick note of thanks and possibly e-mail follow-up questions to the manager. This will help the rest of the process proceed much quicker.

About the Author

Frank LaRosa possesses more than 15 years of experience in the finance industry and oversees ELITE Recruiting & Consulting, serving as the firm’s President and Chief Executive Officer. Through ELITE Recruiting & Consulting, he connects exceptional finance professionals with firms around the nation and offers these applicants advice throughout the recruiting process. In 2010, On Wall Street magazine recognized Frank LaRosa as one of the nation’s Top 10 Managers and he has garnered other significant praise throughout the course of career.


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Frank Larosa

Frank LaRosa leverages more than a decade of experience in the financial sector toward his role as President and CEO of ELITE Recruitment & Consulting. In this position, he focuses on getting to know financial advisors and other investment professionals before recommending that they change firms. The competition is fierce for successful financial advisors, who often bring their clients with them when they change firms. Applying his expertise, LaRosa helps clients through the process. Under LaRosa’s leadership, ELITE Recruitment & Consulting specializes in working with financial professionals to help them move from one company to another. At ELITE Recruitment & Consulting, Frank LaRosa draws on his extensive experience in the investment industry. Frank LaRosa possesses the knowledge and experience necessary to help clients make a smooth the transition. He has worked continuously in the financial industry since graduating from New Jersey’s Kean College in 1996 with a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing. He has stood out in every position he has held. In his first role as a financial advisor with Prudential Securities, he made a name for himself as the firm’s number-one trainee of the year. By late 1998, he had generated over $320,000 in annual revenue. Under his management, client assets amounted to over $18 million. Subsequently, Frank LaRosa worked as a financial advisor for Smith Barney in Red Bank, New Jersey, where he became Assistant Branch Manager. He then received a promotion to Branch Manager of Smith Barney in Alexandria, Virginia. Following this role, he served as Senior Vice President of Smith Barney in Mount Laurel, New Jersey. After Morgan Stanley acquired a majority stake in Smith Barney in 2009, Frank LaRosa became Senior Vice President of the Southern New Jersey Complex, the second-largest in the region with over 115 financial advisors. His achievements included raising the average revenue per financial advisor to $650,000. He was also the region’s top recruiter. Moreover, the highly respected magazine On Wall Street named LaRosa to its fifth annual list of the Top 10 Managers for 2010. In his free time, Frank LaRosa is an avid amateur boxer. He also enjoys golfing and fishing with his boys, as well playing with his two bulldogs. Residing Moorestown, New Jersey, he is married with two sons.