Are You Listening? REALLY Listening?

Real Estate Agent with Solutions Real Estate CA DRE #01490977

Are You Listening? REALLY Listening? 

Sometime you hear such a profound talk by someone you respect that you feel compelled to share. 

Such was the keynote given by Jeff Turner at the CRS Sell-a-Bration at the Peabody Hotel in Orlando this past week. 

The famous ducks at the Peabody Hotel in Orlando FloridaJeff's comments were not directed just at real estate, but "listening as a strategy" in general, and in the social media world.

I won't try to convey all that he said. And what you are about to read is, well, what I heard and took in. I hope you find it helpful and take it to heart. Hopefully Jeff will feel I represented some of his comments accurately.

In our business, listening may be the most important thing you do. But... 

Are You Listening?

Really listening?  

And by that I mean listening in a way that is effective? 

Think so? Well, read on and see if you still believe it. 

Here are the 4 Listening Strategies Jeff Turner referenced:

 *       *       *       *       *       *       *       *


This is the most common method, and one which we likely engage in without realizing it. By not listening you can focus on the task or person you need to and not get distracted by other conversations, or technology. This is true in business and in real life.


CRS Sellabration at the Peabody Hotel in orlando FloridaLISTENING FOR REINFORCEMENT 

This occurs when we listen to what we like and agree with. But that means there is no critical thinking involved. The problem with listening for reinforcement is you do not question because you agree. So, for example, in a listing presentation you may use the wrong script because you are listening for the seller to say with what you are saying. You HEAR them agreeing but they aren't.



You listen this way when you believe what you have to say is more important than what someone else has to say. Hmm, how often does THAT happen!!?? The focus on analyzing what you are going to say in response rather than understanding what the other person is saying. As in the previous listing strategy, there is no critical thinking involved, which is a potential problem. 



This is the preferred and most effective listening strategy...the one we need to be in. Using this listening strategy you are trying to figure out what's not being said, to judge the motives and the truth. You have to want to learn...and this can be hard to do. And the only way to know if someone is listening to you on-line is to say something.


One other point that really resonated with me, and is worth sharing, was "The attitude in your conversations should be ‘How Can I Help Someone?'" To let people know that "I am here for you." So much of the on-line conversation, and in real life, is focused on "me" and "I" rather than "you!" 

One other big take-away was Jeff's point regarding social media - if you don't know why you are there, don't do it. Just because someone says you should be there does not mean you should. Keep that in mind when you are on Facebook, Twitter or any of the other social media sites. 

Or thinking about it.


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Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667 (MT), 914-419-0270 (NY), Broker in NY with Grand Lux Realty and in MT with (coming soon!) - Kalispell, MT
The House Kat

Jeff -

Thanks for posting.   I've been approaching conversations laterly with the attitude, "What can I learn from this person?  What are they trying to teach me?"  I have found this a great way to stop getting irritated by people who don't approach things the way I do (for example, I sometimes have low tolerance for people who don't "get" technology - that's my own issue, and I've been trying to deal with it by focusing on everything else I can learn from my non-tech buddies). 

I think by approaching interactions that way, I've been getting better at listening.  At least I hope I am!!!!


Feb 23, 2011 04:18 AM #32
Lee & Pamela St. Peter
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices YSU Realty: (919) 645-2522 - Raleigh, NC
Making Connections to Success in Real Estate

I just moseyed over Jeff to see if you had started posting about the conference.  True to self you are!  Yeah.  AND starting with one of my favorite people too.  The other Jeff ~ he's actually why I'm still in social media.  When it all started (well when I started a few years back) there was such stupidity going on ~ I hated the word "transparency" everyone was pushing around.  But thanks to Mr. Turner the true meaning of transparency was revealed and engulfed instead of the unprofessional stuff that should be kept quiet. 

Now about listening... years ago I took  Leader Effectiveness Training, developed by Thomas Gordon who coined the term  "Active Listening".  It has served me well over the years and something I credit to getting me  much of where I am today... Now, couple that with Swanepoel's what animal am I and,  as a Giraffe, listening fits my style very well... Great post Jeff and well deserving of a feature!

Feb 23, 2011 04:49 AM #33
Carla Muss-Jacobs, RETIRED
RETIRED / State License is Inactive - Portland, OR

Absolutely, and when you listen you can really get a feel for what Jeff Turner suggests.  Although if you can't be of help/service, you can certainly pick that up just as easily . . . by listening.

Feb 23, 2011 05:21 AM #34
Kate McQueen
CB&A Realtors - Cypress, TX
Tailored service for your real estate needs!

NLP talks about listeners that are either "negative sorters" or "positive sorters."  It's essential to make a good impression right up front -- if you fail in making a good impression the listener will sort what they are hearing in a way that reinforces their bad impression.  I've also encountered this problem with buyers that can't see the positives about a property -- they are too focused on what is wrong.

Thanks for sharing!  It's always important to focus on listening to the words that are being said, and if unsure about someone's meaning, repeat it back to them for confirmation and clarity.

Feb 23, 2011 05:42 AM #35
Marie Story
Coldwell Banker - Pinecrest (Miami) - Pinecrest, FL
Broker Associate, Pinecrest (Miami) Specialist

Jeff, I was just thinking about listening the other day.  I know so many people that no matter what I say, it goes back them.

Example, I'll say I hurt my back yesterday.  And they'll say, oh I remember when I hurt my back, blah, blah, blah.  I find myself making a game of it sometimes.  I'll say something just to see how they're going to make it about themselves - amazing!

Feb 23, 2011 05:58 AM #36
Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman
Liberty Homes - Mililani, HI

so often one would like to hear themselves talk rather than really listen. It's definitely the most important thing listen to our we will learn what their needs are.

Feb 23, 2011 06:13 AM #37
Jim O'Donnell
Raleigh Cary Realty - Fuquay Varina, NC

Thanks for sharing.  As I was reading, I was visualizing myself in all modes, and yes, I do them all

Feb 23, 2011 07:11 AM #38
Peg Barcelo
Fluff My House! Home Staging Inc. 250.486.6369 - Summerland, BC
The FlufftasticStager from Summerland, BC

Jeff, what a great conference that would have been to attend. Thanx for the sysnopsis. Since I love learning new things it can be easy to listen to some people, but I need to work on listening to some others.

Feb 23, 2011 07:24 AM #39
Gay E. Rosen
Julia B. Fee Sotheby's International Realty - Larchmont, NY
As Real as Real Estate Gets!

Jeff - listening is so important....   sometimes it is very hard... but important. Best, Gay

Feb 23, 2011 08:00 AM #40
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Jeff, I have said this before, but I will say it again.  There is a reason why God gave us only one mouth but two ears, we should remind ourselves of that often.

Feb 23, 2011 08:14 AM #41
Lydia Lucas
Prudential CT Realty - Milford, CT

Jeff, I was thrown off a bit by the headings, but that made this such a great post!

Feb 23, 2011 09:07 AM #42
Maria Morton
Chartwell Kansas City Realty - Kansas City, MO
Kansas City Real Estate 816-560-3758

Listening to learn is a good description, Jeff. I call that Active Listening. It takes all of your senses to do it properly and is one of the most difficult skills for most people to master. Thanks for a great post!

Feb 23, 2011 09:40 AM #43
Ryan Case
SCA Real Estate - Anaheim, CA

I have been guilty in the recent past of listening to reply :)

Feb 23, 2011 09:42 AM #44
Cory Barbee
San Diego, CA
Broker (760) 563-4022

Great post...I agree...if you having a conversation with the right mindset, it will lead to many positive things..

Feb 23, 2011 12:02 PM #45
Don Hintz
2D-enterprises / HAUS Design, LLC - Anderson, IN


A big part of 'serving' in the service industry is listening.  As a professional, you know what is going to be in it for you, but you also have to be in it for the client as well.

Wish I could have been there.

Feb 23, 2011 12:03 PM #46
Jacqueline Phan
Alliance Group - San Diego, CA

Great post Jeff!   I often catch myself listening to reply or not listening at all! I will definitely make an effort to "listen to learn".

Feb 23, 2011 12:45 PM #47
Jayne Williamson, REALTOR, Broker, GRI
Keller Williams Realty Mountain Partners, Hendersonville, NC - Hendersonville, NC

Great post!  I had a college professor that told me not listen to what is being said...but, what isn't.  Turns out he was sooooooo right!

Feb 23, 2011 01:34 PM #48
Jeff Turner
RealSatisfied - Santa Clarita, CA

Jeff, I think you got most of the points. :) I'm glad it resonated with you. CRS put out a snippet of the keynote and I posted it here, if anyone is interested in hearing a piece of it: Listening As Strategy Snippet

Feb 23, 2011 04:49 PM #49
Jane Peters
Home Jane Realty - Los Angeles, CA
Los Angeles real estate concierge services

I think the hardest thing for some of us to do is truly listen.  We often think we know what people want and end up being totally wrong.  Thanks for bring this to our attention, Jeff.

Feb 23, 2011 05:09 PM #50
Sarasota & Manatee Counties FL
SaraMana Properties - - Bradenton, FL - Listings In Paradise

Great blog post Jeff! Thank you for sharing with us!

Feb 23, 2011 05:49 PM #51
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The Southern California Relocation Dude
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