#1 Ask about their expectations
Unrealized exceptions.
Failed exceptions.
Unmet needed.

Any of those can make your communications with your SMEs more difficult.

With your first meeting, ask your SME directly about their expectations of the project so you can identify potential milestones and even identify risks early.

#2 Ask about their previous interactions with your team or department
This will help to gain understanding of what they think the process is and clarify the real process.

It will also help to smooth out and frustrations they had in the past and do an ad-hoc lessons learned.

#3 Ask about their communication preferences
Some SMEs are quicker to reply to an instant message.
Some SMEs will reply to emails in 10 minutes, and others will reply once a week.
Some SMEs would rather just see a document in a shared cloud space to add comments.
Some like Slack.
Some like text messages.
and some don’t like anything – so set up your weekly, biweekly meetings with your initial meeting now.

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