I've always been kind of an eye roller when it comes to mission statements and guiding principles. I understand the value in taking the time to craft and refer back to such thematic guides, I just feel compelled to eye roll (at first) at the silliness. You have to admit, there's something a little silly about pledging to be "honest" or to be "customer oriented".
But this weekend, I stumbled upon what, even as a skeptic, I think is a pretty good guiding principle.
Whatever you do, make sure you can smile about it no matter who's around you.
Here's what I mean: As a Realtor, there are really only two ways I can make a living. One is by working with buyers to buy a house, and the other is working with sellers to sell a house. So, I try to get listings. I try to get people to let me help them sell their houses, and I try to remember that Montpelier and Barre are pretty small communities.
That's what most Realtors do...with the possible exception of remembering that Montpelier and Barre are pretty small communities.
But I'm not going to send out an abusive mailing campaign. I'm not going to "hard close" someone. The words "I'm not leaving until you sign" are not coming out of my mouth. There are lots of reasons for this position, but mainly it's because I don't want to be at the grocery store, see someone I've been unprofessional to, and be embarrassed.
Another aspect to consider is that sometimes I don't know the faces of the people I'm contacting. If I've called someone selling a house in Montpelier or someone selling a house in Barre to preview the house (and, ultimately, try to get the listing) I may talk on the phone with them several times before meeting them. But they might know me. My face is on the website. My face is on the listing sheets. If I've been unprofessional, I have a lot to worry about.
And you know what? I don't want to bother worrying about anything other than how to remove this blue food coloring from making sugar cookies from my fingers.
Does it pay off? Would I be better off being a little pushier, and "encouraging" people to make decisions right on the spot? Well, I might get a couple more listings, but I'd get a heck of a lot more sideways looks too.
Late last week I received a call from someone I had met a month ago when she was trying to sell her house on her own. Was I trying to get the listing? Yes. Was I pushy? No. When she called, she said she appreciated my approach. She said I was the only Realtor she talked to who actually seemed to want to help her, inform her, and give her some suggestions.
Those are all true, and then I ended up with the listing.
Not only that, but when I see her at grocery store next week, I'll be able to smile.