A chessboard, with one pawn against a lot of pieces from the other side (Credit: iStock)

(Related: How to Take Seminars in a Different Direction)

Personally, I think many agents and advisors like scripts for all the wrong reasons.  They consider them like a book of spells in a Harry Potter movie.  Read the right spell aloud.  The person does what you want.  In reality, it’s like the Miranda Warning from crime dramas: “If you cannot afford a lawyer, one will be appointed for you…”  What are the pros and cons?

Pros of Scripting

Here’s the case why you do it.

1. Shakespeare.

When it’s performed on stage, the actors don’t “wing it.”  It’s a classic, the best delivery. That’s the test of time.

2. Someone wrote the script.

It might be a successful agent saying: “Here’s what worked for me.”  It might be a marketing department saying: “We researched what’s important to prospects about this product, here’s how you say it.”  Thought went into it.  You don’t need to reinvent the wheel.

3. What happens when you lose your place? 

The prospect goes off on a tangent.  You get them back on track.  “Now, where was I…”

4. Legal considerations.

You include the stuff prospects need to understand about the product.  You don’t guess or accidentally make misstatements because you don’t understand all the features.

5. Practice makes perfect.

Keep doing something.  You get better at it.

6. You aren’t winging it.

We’ve all unconsciously said: “I’ve got this big prospect call coming up.  I’m good, so I’m not going to prepare.”

Cons of Scripting

There are natural reasons not to like scripts.

1. It sounds scripted.

If you get a sales call from a human being at home (increasingly rare these days) you can tell when they are reading from a script.

2. Not your words.

Now, consider the script a starting point.  “I would say it differently…”  You write your own script.

3. I don’t read instructions either.

If you are like me, whatever comes out of the box, I think I can figure it out without needing “instructions.”

4. Scripts are for newbies.

I’ve been at this for years.  You don’t need to tell me what to say.

5. Every situation is different.

Scripts assume one size fits all.  Actually, they are a starting point.

6. I’ll lose my place.

What if I’m interrupted?  The prospect asks a question?  I’ll forget where I was!  Actually, you’ll have your finger on the place where you stopped.

There are pros and cons concerning scripting.  In most cases the pros outweigh the cons.

— Read How to Order Wine Like a Boss (Without Paying Like One)on ThinkAdvisor.


Bryce SandersBryce Sanders is president of Perceptive Business Solutions Inc. He provides high-net-worth client acquisition training for the financial services industry. His book, “Captivating the Wealthy Investor,” can be found on Amazon.