Getting Comfortable with the Truth
Real estate is a people business and can therefore be very unpredictable at times. Clients don't always do what you think they will do and often they change their minds at a moment's notice. Real estate requires strong communication skills and the ability to deliver the truth in a factual and practical manner.
Most agents have experienced a moment in which they know the truth, but their lips couldn't express it. But when you can get comfortable allowing the truth to come out, you will be amazed at not only how much time and energy you save, it will increase your confidence and your clients' confidence in you.
Sure, clients don't always like the truth, but that doesn't mean they won't like you. In fact, there is something very appealing with someone who can tell the truth. The real art of telling the truth without getting a negative response is all in the way it is delivered. Delivering it in a strong, calm, and factual manner can lead to honest discussions in which the client is more comfortable having because they can tell by your delivery that you are sincere and the option that they originally had in their mind is simply not available.
For example, imagine a doctor has just learned that his or her patient (a professional hockey player who the doctor admires) has a broken leg. The doctor has looked at the x-rays. The prognosis is not pretty and it will serious affect the future career of this athlete. The doctor has some truth to share and the athlete probably won't be very accepting of the information.
But in order for the athlete to make the strongest recovery, the doctor has to tell the truth and provide the athlete with a plan for surgery and physical therapy. If the doctor says, "Oh, just wear the cast for six weeks and we will determine the next steps then," but knows the cast by itself won't do the job, this is a detriment to the athlete. If the doctor instead shares the gut-wrenching truth about what lies ahead for the player and offers the truth about what surgery and physical therapy can do for his recovery, this is in the athlete's long-term best interest. The doctor can choose to deal with the truth of this situation now which is harder, or he can sugar coat, allow the hockey player to build up false hope only to set him up for further disappointment in the future.
Every overpriced listing I see on the MLS represents nothing more than an agent who was unable to have an honest pricing conversation up front. Agreeing to a seller's inflated price and giving them hope that it might sell is exactly the same as a doctor who isn't able to tell the hockey player the truth.
Learning to get comfortable telling the absolute truth is the best way to manage your time, client expectations and stress. I would much rather walk away from a seller who has just told me there is no way they could sell their home at the current market price versus listing the home, have it not sell, and then have to deal with the seller. That is only setting everyone up for disappointment.
Get comfortable with the truth!
By Denise Lones CSP, M.I.R.M., CDEI - The founding partner of The Lones Group, Denise Lones, brings nearly three decades of experience in the real estate industry. With agent/broker coaching, expertise in branding, lead generation, strategic marketing, business analysis, new home project planning, product development, Denise is nationally recognized as the source for all things real estate. With a passion for improvement, Denise has helped thousands of real estate agents, brokers, and managers build their business to unprecedented levels of success, while helping them maintain balance and quality of life.