Conduct an Engaging Retirement Plan Participant Meeting | American Funds

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How-To Guides

Conduct an Engaging Retirement Plan Participant Meeting

Helping employees reach their retirement goals doesn’t stop at enrollment. Keeping them engaged can help reinforce good savings habits — and benefit your practice. Here’s a simple strategy for leading successful education seminars.

Step
1

Choose a topic

  • Review employee and plan demographics with the plan sponsor to identify opportunities such as the benefits of an employer match or areas of concern such as high loan rates.
  • Select the appropriate presentation and script from our Investing for Life (PDF) education series:

You Are Here
Help participants stay on track with their savings

Step Right In
Describe the benefits of target date funds

Ready to Go?
Explain the advantages of participating in a plan

Riding out the Bumps
Provide strategies for riding out market volatility

Find Your Balance
Show the importance of a diversified portfolio

You Won’t Miss It
Illustrate the future benefit of saving a little more today

Take Your Pick
Discuss before- and after-tax contribution options

See the Big Picture?
Offer participants a way to determine how much to save

Should I Take One
Explain the pros and cons of taking a plan loan

Need Direction?
Discuss the benefits of working with a financial advisor

Where Are You Going?
Describe the options available to participants after their employment ends

Step
2

Set the stage

  • Save the date. Set the date, time and location for your seminar with the plan sponsor.
    • Consider holding your seminar during the lunch hour so you can reach as many people as possible in a single meeting.
    • Download the Investing for Life presentation and script, and order enough related brochures to hand out at the seminar.
  • Get the word out. Brainstorm with the plan sponsor on the best way to advertise the meeting.
    • Consider sending an email or posting flyers two to three weeks in advance to generate interest.
    • Be specific about the topic you’re covering, why employees should attend and how long the seminar will run.
  • Create an agenda. You may have limited time to present your topic. Putting together an agenda will help guide the discussion and keep you on track for time. Consider:
    • Opening with a brief introduction of who you are and what your role is as the plan’s advisor — and as a financial advisor.
    • Providing background on what the seminar will cover and why the topic is relevant to participants.
    • Allowing time for a Q&A session at the end of the presentation.
    • Offering your contact information for anyone who may have questions about their retirement account or other savings goals like college.
  • Practice, practice, practice. Again, your time may be limited, so it’s important to get your delivery down pat. Familiarize yourself with the Investing for Life topic brochure and rehearse using the presentation script.

Step
3

Stand and deliver

  • Be prepared. Have the brochures you ordered earlier available to give out at the door or to leave on seats as a takeaway. Then, open the seminar by briefly reviewing the agenda so seminar participants know what to expect.
  • Dive in. Keep the presentation script handy as a reference as you go through the slides. End by taking questions if you have allotted time or provide your contact information for participants who would like to speak with you one-on-one.

Afterward

Circle back. A day or two after the presentation, follow up with the plan sponsor to discuss how the presentation went, and to get his or her thoughts on future topics and seminars.


This material is intended for use by financial professionals or in conjunction with the advice of a financial professional.

Investors should carefully consider investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses. This and other important information is contained in the fund prospectuses and summary prospectuses, which can be obtained from a financial professional and should be read carefully before investing.