Real Estate Practices August 11, 2015

The Downside of Getting Caught Up in the Business of Today

Joan Allen on awkward phone calls and proactive marketing.

As I catch glimpses into the lives of busy Windermere Stellar Real Estate Brokers, I am constantly in awe. Between juggling challenges like tough inspections, weekend buyers, scarce inventory and the latest technology that you must learn now, it’s a wonder how you stay sane! You’re expected to know everything and be everything to everyone.

I vividly remember the feeling of just keeping my head above water to survive the demands of a hot marketplace when I was selling real estate. I fell victim to the practice of spending too much time working in my business rather than on my business. It was hard to think about future opportunities when I was immersed in the activities of the day.

Phone Calls: It’s About the Person on the Other End

But when the storm settled (as it always did) I’d panic. Without any clients in the queue, I wasn’t sure where my next sale was coming from, leading me to pick up the phone. Now, anyone who knows me will understand that this action wasn’t easy for me. I’m a social person, but on a deeper, more real level. I’m more apt to talk about what’s really going on — Are you fully engaged on this career path? Is your current situation bringing out the best in you? — rather than safe topics like the weather and sports. And the idea of reaching out to connect with you for the sole purpose of helping me made it even worse!

However, I’d finally set my nervousness aside and ring up past clients, old college buddies and new moms at my kids’ school. I was pleasantly surprised to hear happy voices on the other end. These people actually liked me as their friend, not just as their real estate agent, and were glad to hear from me!

I never made the conversation about me. That was a secondary topic that I didn’t even need to bring up. After hearing about their news — How is your new house? Do you like your neighbors? Is Tommy catching up in school? — the friend on the other end would eventually steer the conversation to my needs because they were genuinely interested in me. Since I just so happened to sell real estate, the conversations always ended with them remembering a cousin who was buying a house or a neighbor who was listing theirs. I never had to make the bold ask. The person on the other end did all the work for me!  

Business Development Program: Help Us Help You

Although times have definitely changed since I actively sold real estate, the most monumental things remain the same. We’re in an industry that will always rely on human interaction. Without it, our business is in jeopardy. However, we realize that today’s variety of communications options make it harder to pick up the phone and high-volume producers will always be short on time.

That’s why we’ve created Windermere Stellar’s new Business Development Program to encourage proactive marketing. We want to help you with the things that are easy to push off — such as maintaining your database, sending mailers out, and more — so that you’re free to engage with your sphere for future business, while simultaneously handling the many details required by current clients and transactions.

Take a few minutes of proactive time this week to see how our Business Development Specialists can help you. I’m sure that back in the day the thought of “taking a few minutes of time” would have sent me into a fit of laughter. But if I had known that 15 minutes of stolen time here and there could impact my business in such a helpful way, I might have reconsidered. The thought of being able to kiss that daunting feeling goodbye — when I’d realize that my busyness had caused my future pipeline to look dim — would have greatly appealed to me. The relief might have inspired me toward making an extra phone call or two.