One of my friends on Facebook asked, "Which one would you choose between a spoon and a fork? To which I replied, "You can use your hands instead of a fork. But you cannot use hands to replace spoon's utility. Can you scoop soup with a fork? Spoon for me." That was a simple and innocuous response.
Someone reacted to the comment and called me saleswoman. The reference to me as a saleswoman had my blood boiling up to a scalding temperature. I would not dignify his post on that thread because people whose lives don't revolve around real estate know nothing about the complications of this business. I may be over reacting. But this is who I am.
Yes, we are in the sales business. But we are nowhere close to just being salespeople.
In ringing in 2014, it is time to revisit why we, real estate professionals, should be differentiated from the "mere" salespeople
We, in real estate, do and experienced the following for our clients:
1) We observe and practice OLD CAR at all times: Obedience, Loyalty, Disclosure, Confidentiality, Accounting and Reasonable Care and Diligence.
2) We have to fulfill the continuing education requirements imposed by the State.
3) We serve as temporary sponges or shock absorbers for beleaguered and disheartened clients who did not get the house they wanted.
4) We lost many weeks of time and efforts on a transaction which fell apart due to varied and unforeseen circumstances.
5) We negotiate hard and smart for the clients. Negotiation is not about aggressiveness and arrogance. It is finding a middle ground for the clients' best interest.
6) We have to keep sanitary wipes handy. Oh yes. We have been to filthy and strange places.
7) We suffer from headaches and stuffy nose due to allergic reactions to unknown substance or chemicals we expose ourselves into.
8) We had a brush with real estate attorneys who fail to perform accordingly.
9) We have had bouts of stomach cramps and minute breakdowns when we deal with fellow agents whose "ego writes checks their bodies can't cash"-- (line borrowed from Top Gun).
10) We sulk in for a bit on a lost listing opportunity but we spring back up again.
11) We are labeled either as a friend or a foe, depending on which side we are working.
12) We invest our mind, heart, time and money in our clients: past, present and future.
There are many more reasons why our value should be differentiated and should never be diminished. They are variegated, distinctive and special.
Here is a Toast to all the Real Estate Professionals who made our clients' dreams come true.