Babyback ribs, echo back and better conversations

Education & Training with Borino Productions

We're gonna go to Applebee's, a casual family restaurant right across from Ikea. We're not here for the 'babyback babyback ribs' right now, but to watch an experiment in progress...

ribs and real estate communication The place is quite busy and a young waitress is taking orders.

None of the customers are aware that they are taking part in a scientific experiment by psychologist Dr. Rick van Baaren. And neither is the waitress -- her instructions are to treat all customers the same, with only one exception: With customers on the left side of the restaurant, the waitress writes down each order and repeats it back to the customers verbatim. With tables on the right, she only writes down the orders and acknowledges each one with a "yes" or "OK".

At the end of the shift, the research team carefully counts all tips. Ready for this?

On average, customers on the left side of the restaurant who were 'echoed back', gave the waitress tips 140% larger!

Here is HOW and WHY it works...

The "echo back" works best when you follow the natural rhythms of conversation. If you INSTANTLY repeat what your prospect tells you, it is obvious and irritating (like a five-year old repeating everything). But when you repeat what you hear after a SHORT DELAY (and even better, also write it down), you communicate something very important on a deeper level: I am listening to you. I have understood you. I agree with you.

confident communication in real estateNotice that the waitress communicated that to the other customers, too. BUT... So much of what we communicate goes beyond simple words and actions -- the unconscious communication. Without being aware of it, the customers who were 'echoed back' felt they received a better service.

Try it next time you're having a conversation with a prospect and notice how quickly 'in sync' you get with them.

Would you like to chat confidently with your prospects and always know what to say? Sign up for the live Communication PLUS.



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Gladys Webb
Avast Realty - Tuscaloosa, AL

Good information and a good test I will try it daily along with some of your other tips thank so much for posting on AR.

May 08, 2012 12:03 AM #1
David & Lisa Webber
RE/MAX Executive - Crofton, MD

I like it, great tip!

May 08, 2012 12:51 AM #2
Brian Schulman
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, Lancaster PA - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster County PA RealEstate Expert 717-951-5552

Great insight, Borino!  People instinctively react better when they feel they are being listened to and respected.

May 08, 2012 01:10 AM #3
Travis "the SOLD man" Parker; Associate Broker
Team Linda Simmons, Enterprise, AL 36330 - Enterprise, AL
email: / cell: 334-494-7846

Cool idea!! I'll try it as well!

May 08, 2012 01:10 AM #4
Ron Aguilar
Continental Mortgage - Saint George, UT
Mortgage & Real Estate Advisor since 1995

I have been doing this for many years, just try to not be obvious or irritating to the other person, it depends on the other person..

May 08, 2012 01:13 AM #5
Jairo Arreola
Lotus Group Realty - San Jose, CA
VA Home Loan Specialist - SF Bay Area - South Bay

Another great tip! We have to be great listeners all the time. Great Read!!

May 08, 2012 10:02 AM #6
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