Service with a Smile

Real Estate Agent with eXp Realty of California, Inc. CA DRE #01490977

Service with a Smile


I went to my favorite gelato shop last night for some dessert after dinner.


I was greeted with a wonderful smile which made me feel great, along with the anticipation of a wonderful dessert that evening.


But the smile, and the service, during my tasting and purchase made a particular positive impact….I felt good, and appreciated as a customer.


I’ve been to this store many times and always feel welcome. There’s a customer service message there.


I found myself thinking…this is the way it always should be in a business. Even when you are there with a problem to be solved as opposed to buying a product or service, you deserve a smile and a positive attitude. But as we all know that is not always the case.


Sometimes it’s a frown, grumpiness and a crappy attitude.


No doubt last night I would have bought even if the service person had an attitude, since they had what I needed. But I certainly walked away feeling good about my positive experience.


So what’s the lesson here for us in real estate?!


Do we smile when we are meeting buyers or sellers? Do they feel good after meeting us? Does our demeanor imply we are pleased to meet them, and to help them?


"Because of your smile, you make life more beautiful."

~ Thich Nhat Hanh ~


What about their experience with us on the phone?


Do you smile when you dial? Does your tone of voice imply a strong positive attitude, especially when answering the phone call from someone you don’t know? Or do you sound rushed, or annoyed, because you are busy with something else or having one of THOSE days.  I have certainly experienced that as a caller haven’t you?!


That first impression, in person or on the phone, can be mighty powerful. Maybe more so if it’s negative.


How about your texts and emails? Does your tone come across as positive, even when the message you have to deliver may not be completely positive? Do you sound friendly and helpful, caring and concerned?


We also have the option to include emojis in our online communications (you know, those smiley faces and all the other options we have). But perhaps a smiley face may be going too far, and may be perceived as unprofessional, especially if you and the recipient are just getting to know each other. You have to decide.


It may be better to wait until you get an emoji from the recipient first, which might imply that level of informality is OK with them. I’m not sure what the protocol is. But personally, I wouldn’t just assume it’s OK. But that’s your decision.


And maybe using emojis, or emoticons (those made with with your keyboard) just isn’t your style. That’s certainly fine, too!


But I think you have to be careful about which emoji(s) you use and when. Delivering bad news in a text or email with a smiling emoji might not be a good idea.


The problem with online communication is you are missing the body language and your voice, plus your wonderful smile. So you have to be particularly careful about what you are saying and how. That testy text or email can get read over and over.


Service with a smile is more likely to be received well, depending on the news. And the positive impression counts a lot. I know if I had not already been to that gelato store multiple times my positive experience last night would have brought me back.

Posted by

Jeff Dowler, CRS
Certified Residential Specialist / Realtor®

Call or Text
(760) 840-1360

Email Me

Enjoy the beach life in Carlsbad, Oceanside, Encinitas,
San Marcos & other
North San Diego County coastal
& inland communities

Buy - Sell - Invest - Second Homes  


About Me

My Blog

My Website

  Jeff Dowler's Facebook Profile  Jeff Dowler's YouTube Profile    Jeff Dowler's LinkedIn Profile


Sheri Sperry - MCNE®
Coldwell Banker Realty - Sedona, AZ
(928) 274-7355 ~ YOUR Solutions REALTOR®

Hi Jeff,

Last night, we went to a restaurant for dinner.  Our waitress was the epitome of positivity.  This was probably the best encounter I have had with the wait staff.  This restaurant was taken over by a new owner, remodeled, and renamed. Fabulous!

I practice having a positive attitude in all my dealings. However, I do not use emojis on my professional communication. 😇

Jan 13, 2023 02:38 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Sounds like a great dining experience Sheri Sperry - MCNE® and they are on the right path to great success.

It makes sense to practice being's not always easy.


Jan 13, 2023 04:04 PM
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
Retired New Hampshire Home Stager

It makes all the difference when the person serving you is friendly and smiling. It is such a great feeling to walk away from the experience thinking "what a nice person."

Jan 14, 2023 03:24 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Absolutely, Sharon Tara ! It's a wonderful feeling, and encourages a similar response from the recipient, too!


Jan 14, 2023 09:09 AM
Brenda Mayette
Miranda Real Estate Group, Inc. - Glenville, NY
Getting results w/ knowledge & know-how!

Great topic Jeff Dowler, CRS !  I'm a stickler when it comes to customer service... Whether it's gelato or a house, people should feel appreciated.  Knowing when to have direct communication vs leaning on technology is, I think, the difference between a true professional and well... one who is simply carrying a license. 

Jan 14, 2023 08:01 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

I think most people want to feel appreciated Brenda Mayette no matter what the business.

The manner in which we communicate with our clients and prospects is so important.


Jan 14, 2023 09:12 AM
Aura Alex
Seattle, WA
Retired Real Estate Pro

In the online world, we can smile on our blogs and comments too.

Thank you for your smiling post, Jeff.

Now, I can't get that smile off my face. You have made my day!! 😄

Jan 14, 2023 12:33 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Thank you for bringing a smile to MY face Aura Alex!


Jan 14, 2023 12:45 PM
Ed Silva, 203-206-0754
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

Sometimes I smile so much and often that my wife has to caution me to hold back so people don't think I'm simple.

Jan 14, 2023 03:11 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Well that's a new one for me Ed Silva I suppose if someone is always smiling it might not appear genuine.


Jan 14, 2023 03:17 PM
Edward Gilmartin
CRE - Boston, MA

Seems like most of the time I’m greeted by an agent often talking on her smart phone or busy texting someone

Jan 15, 2023 06:54 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Yep it happens a lot Edward Gilmartin 


Jan 15, 2023 09:53 AM
Aamer Parvez
N/A - Brooklyn, NY

I completely agree with this.  Our primary goal should be to provide the greatest customer service to our clients and send them away happy with a smile so they keep coming back and/or send other clients our way!

Jan 15, 2023 08:56 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Thank you, Aamer!


Jan 15, 2023 05:09 PM
Roy Kelley
Retired - Gaithersburg, MD

Good Sunday morning, Jeff.

Keep smiling and have an outstanding week.

Jan 15, 2023 09:39 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Thanks for stopping by Roy Kelley 


Jan 15, 2023 05:09 PM
Jane Chaulklin-Schott
TEAMCONNECT REALTY - (407) 394-9766 - Orlando, FL
TeamConnect Luxury Homes - Orlando, Florida, 32836

Happy Sunday, Jeff Dowler, CRS .  Just read a reblog of your post by Roy Kelley .  I had to come over and tell you how I felt it was an excellent post -  loved the quote which was well supported and post that was well thought out and well written.  I believe you are an excellent writer.  Have I missed any books you have authored?  Any novels you've written and Roy read?!?  

Jan 15, 2023 11:39 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

What a nice thing to say Jane Chaulklin-Schott  Thank you for the kind words and compliment.

No books, just lots of blogging! Perhaps some day...


Jan 15, 2023 05:10 PM
Wanda Kubat-Nerdin - Wanda Can!
Red Rock Real Estate (435) 632-9374 - St. George, UT
The best agent in Southern Utah!

Enjoyed this wonderful post, Jeff! Effective communication plays a huge role in business. If I go to a restaurant or specialty shop, I prefer the smiles and 'happy to be here attitude', otherwise it negatively impacts the experience. Same for industry professionals and our efforts!

Jan 15, 2023 03:22 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Thank you Wanda Kubat-Nerdin - Wanda Can! 

Effective communication is incredibly important in business, and accompanied by a smile makes it even better for everyone. The opposite is a drag.


Jan 15, 2023 05:14 PM
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

All good advice. Dial with a smile - and write with a smile as well!

We have one hardware store in our area where everyone makes the customers feel appreciated. I don't even both going into the others.

Jan 16, 2023 07:38 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Well that's a good testimonial for smiling service, Marte Cliff 

Yes, we CAN dial and write with a smile! Thank you.


Jan 16, 2023 08:19 PM
Kimo Jarrett
Cyber Properties - Huntington Beach, CA
Pro Lifestyle Solutions

Begin every communication interaction with a smile. Smiling denotes friendliness, cheerfulness, closeness and confidence. The value of your smile will determine your income regardless of your industry. Most salespeople are poorly trained, so, the trainers need to be retrained themselves on basic elements of salesmanship.  Great post. 

Jan 16, 2023 11:35 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Thank you for those thoughts Kimo Jarrett  I agree!


Jan 17, 2023 10:40 AM
Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate-Kansas City Homes - Kansas City, MO
Experienced Agent in Kansas City Metro area

I'm wondering if your gelato shop has excellent management and makes their employees feel valued--that can be a big part of service, along with the attitude of the employee.  

Jan 17, 2023 01:16 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

I believe so Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR 

I met and talked with the owner, who is from Italy, when they first opened. I suspect the hiring and training are taken very seriously by her - it certainly shows in all that they do, and in all of the staff I have interfaced with over the last several years.


Jan 17, 2023 04:32 PM
Charita Cadenhead
eXp Realty - Birmingham, AL
Serving Jefferson and Shelby Counties (Alabama)

Jeff Dowler, CRS I'll go you one better.  I smile when I make customer/client/cold calls.  It makes a big difference.

Jan 17, 2023 04:50 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Good for you Charita Cadenhead 

It works, doesn't it?!


Jan 18, 2023 04:45 PM
Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

Great analogy!   Remembering sales training 101 -  always smile while you're on the phone as the recipient can tell!   You've made a great point and I love your analogy.  But then again, I love gelato, too!

Jan 17, 2023 06:07 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Thanks Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ  It really can make a difference.

I've eaten my fair share of their gelato and it's as good as Italy (yes, the owner and the chef are both from Rome).


Jan 18, 2023 04:47 PM
Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ

Wow Jeff!  Really cool.  Pun intended!


Jan 24, 2023 08:47 AM
Lynn B. Friedman CRS Atlanta, GA 404-617-6375
Atlanta Homes ODAT Realty - Love our Great City - Love our Clients! Buckhead - Midtown - Westside - Atlanta, GA
Concierge Service for Our Atlanta Sellers & Buyers

Yes, Jeff, online does eliminate the personal touch... All the best - Lynn

"The problem with online communication is you are missing the body language and your voice, plus your wonderful smile." 

Jan 17, 2023 07:04 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Lynn B. Friedman CRS Atlanta, GA 404-939-2727 

But there are ways to make it as positive as possible. Thanks for stopping by.


Jan 18, 2023 04:49 PM
Lynn B. Friedman CRS Atlanta, GA 404-617-6375

Jeff Dowler, CRS  OF COURSE!!!
Especially if the communication is from you!  Lynn

Jan 18, 2023 05:01 PM
Pat Starnes-Front Gate Realty
Front Gate Real Estate - Brandon, MS
601-991-2900 Office; 601-278-4513 Cell

Great message, Jeff. Recently I had a positive experience at one fast food restaurant. The wait staff smiled, made eye contact, and the experience was pleasant. A few nights later, I visited a competitor's restaurant. The wait staff barely grunted the amount I owed, never smiled, never spoke, generally was a grump. He had my food, so I smiled and said please and thank you like my momma taught me. The same courteousness related to our business. We provide a SERVICE and should remember that. I'll go one step further and say I NEVER deliver bad news in a text. You can't use enough emojis to soften that blow. :)

Jan 18, 2023 08:54 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Hi Pat Starnes-Front Gate Realty 

No doubt we have all had good, and bad, dining experiences as you described.

Good point about delivering bad news by texting, and emojis!


Jan 18, 2023 04:51 PM
Diana Dahlberg
1 Month Realty - Pleasant Prairie, WI
Real Estate in Kenosha, WI since 1994 262-308-3563

"We shall never know all the good a simple smile can do."

Jan 23, 2023 10:24 AM
Jeff Dowler, CRS

Well said Diana Dahlberg  and something for us all to keep in mind.


Jan 23, 2023 12:11 PM