Talking is Action!

By
Real Estate Services

I've decided to "weigh in" on the issue of providing unanticipated services from the perspective of a real estate agent because I'm sure that many of you are working harder than you have in the past.  Much of the weekend was spent in preparation for an upcoming presentation to title professionals.  The title industry is facing profitability issues caused by reduced business levels and increased competition.  The "knee jerk" reaction is to do anything and everything to bring difficult and possibly unprofitable deals to the table. 

Providing unanticipated services in difficult deals

Real estate agents need to pay close attention to every associated cost of a transaction to sustain profitability, especially the incremental costs associated with providing unanticipated services.  It's not enough to say that you're making $x,xxxx in commissions without considering the operating and opportunity costs of added services.  You're unable to charge supplemental fees making personal productivity the only viable option to prevent losses. 

All time comes with tangible costs and consequences

Every time that you make a phone call or drive somewhere to facilitate a deal that wouldn't close otherwise, you're expending a valuable resource in the form of time.  Don't think only in terms of overall compensation.  Think in terms of enhanced production capacity or personal fulfillment if you were to spend your time differently.  It doesn't matter if you used the time to blog for future contacts (business related) or watch your kid's ballgame (personal). 

 Are you a professional order taker or a professional decision maker?

Order takers:

  • Tend to focus only on short term goals or gratification
  • Will continuously offer additional services to appease others 
  • Will work 24/7 without concern for costs, consequences to industry, or profitability 
  • Perceive marketing as the most important business activity
  • Shun the role of education in professional development 

 

Decision makers:

  • Implement a comprehensive strategy that emphasizes long term success
  • Understand the importance of professional boundaries and compensation
  • Recognize the need for personal time as part of a bigger picture
  • Integrate marketing as one of many vital business activities
  • Embrace every opportunity to expand professional, business, and interpersonal skills
What's this mean?

By giving services away for free, you create unrealistic future expectations and devalue your work-product.  I know that it's a difficult reality to accept, but it's true.  Buyers and sellers are likely to use you in the future, or refer your services to others, only if they respect your decision making abilities.  Decision makers offer real value to a transaction; order takers do not.   There's nothing wrong with explaining your time availability and the scope of your services at the very onset of a professional relationship.  All other professionals do it. 

So can you!

There's more

Your value as a professional lies not only in your ability to make decisions, but in your ability to use words to commit others to productive activity.  It's all about the way that you communicate with buyers, sellers, and the other professionals in a transaction. This rule applies to your personal productivity and profitability in general and becomes particularly important when facing additional work-loads caused by difficult deals.

The key is to get things done with words.  Talking is action. 

Effective communication = Profitability!

For follow up posts see:  Professional Boundaries: Two real world examples and Radical Professionalism.

   _________________________________________________________________________________________________
 

 Note: On Tuesday morning at 10:00 AM I'll be speaking at:

The Management Education Center

Eli Broad Graduate School of Management (Michigan State University)

811 West Square Lake Road, Troy, MI 48098

If anyone works nearby and has spare time that afternoon, let me know. 

It would be great to meet other members of Active Rain.

Click here for general information about lecture.

close

This entry hasn't been re-blogged:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
Spam prevention

Accessibility option: listen to a question and answer it!

To submit the form,
drag the printer to the circle on the side.

Type below the answer to what you hear. Numbers or words, lowercase:

Tags:
best practices
professional demeanor
professional boundaries

Comments 30 New Comment

Anonymous
Post a Comment
Spam prevention

Accessibility option: listen to a question and answer it!

To submit the form,
drag the tag to the circle on the side.

Type below the answer to what you hear. Numbers or words, lowercase:

Rainer
188,378
Laurie Manny
Long Beach CA Real Estate

Ed, 

This morning when I wrote my comment I mentioned that I was resigned to not getting this listing.  My response to the seller was as demanding as his was to me, and then some

I just received an email from the seller that he has chosen me to be his listing agent with no further negotiations.  He accepted all of my terms, and they were strong. His response was pleasant and respectful.

You could have blown me over with a feather.  

April 30, 2007 08:33 PM
Rainer
98,290
Ed Rybczynski

Laurie

Doesn't surprise me one bit.  I almost mentioned in my comment  to you that you would probably get this listing on your terms.  It's about boundaries and respect.  It works every time.  

Way to go! 

April 30, 2007 08:37 PM
Rainer
98,290
Ed Rybczynski

Joan

The key is to do business only with people that you trust and respect.  Choose your clients with the utmost of care says Tom Peters and he's right.   But, I agree, it's difficult for any one person to stay one top of every detail.  I have people from different backgrounds that I trust greatly and talk to constantly about contracts that are coming together for the consulting firm.  We are working on a lot of different things now that are very complicated and too much for any one person to deal with without help.  Thanks for commenting.

April 30, 2007 08:45 PM
Rainer
2,955
Christine Beaur-Mortezaie
Main Street Realtors

Great topic! and so timely.

I just had a potential buyer call on one of my listings - with a list of demands! Well, I had to set up the tone fast. I did something I had never done in my 4 years of business, that is send him a Buyer Representation Agreement. I could not see myself running crazy for someone I did not know, I did know his intentions and I had a hard time trusting him. It was a bad start.

This business like another business should be based on knowledge, common goals and it should be a mutually respectful relationship. And if it is not framed at the begining, bad times will be real bad. We will pay with many hours of unproductive time and frustration. Better lose a potential client.

So am I order taker or a decision maker? Well I suppose both, but definitely striving to be a decision maker.

 

April 30, 2007 09:35 PM
Rainer
98,290
Ed Rybczynski

Christine

Great story.  It's much better to lose a single deal and retain your self respect.  Why do a deal ... just for the sake of doing a deal ... when you know that your going to lose money and hate yourself in the morning.  All business people struggle with the order taker vs decision maker dilemma until they've taken a few knocks.  Then it easier to do what needs to be done.  Thanks for sharing your story. 

May 01, 2007 05:31 AM
Anonymous
Post a Comment
Spam prevention

Accessibility option: listen to a question and answer it!

To submit the form,
drag the house to the circle on the side.

Type below the answer to what you hear. Numbers or words, lowercase:

Rainer
98,290

Ed Rybczynski

Ask me a question
*
*
*
Spam prevention

Accessibility option: listen to a question and answer it!

To submit the form,
drag the balloons to the circle on the side.

Type below the answer to what you hear. Numbers or words, lowercase:

Additional Information