Posts Tagged ‘Go-Giver’

posted by on Random (Un)Common Sense

A few weeks ago, we did a show in the SWS Virtual Studio called “Conflict to Cooperation” where my awesomely awesome co-host Mr. Bob Burg himself (co-author of the Go-Giver books and the recently released Adversaries into Allies) joined me to discuss various strategies to take potentially adversarial relationships and situations and, well, make them NOT adversarial! Or at least, get to the point of being closer to a win/win than you might be otherwise.

I got SO much out of the show that I want to share, so this will probably become a little series – we shall see!

So, first things first – WHO do you have conflict with in your real estate career? Well, I polled the audience prior to the show asking just that question and the results were interesting. You can see them here, but the jist of the general response was that the Number One party you fuss with is the agent on the other side of your transactions, followed closely by your seller clients.

Interesting, huh? That one of the most common adversarial relationships in your business is with your CLIENTS, specifically, your sellers?

Actually, it’s not so surprisingly given the unique nature of the traditional real estate agent/seller client relationship. On one hand, we are obligated by our Code of Ethics and agency agreements to place our clients’ interests above our own, but on the other, we are compensated only if our clients make certain decisions that we are supposed to be guiding them on! And sometimes, the best path for our clients to take is NOT the one that ensures we get paid!

Anyway, that’s a soapbox for a different day, but suffice it to say that unless a real estate agent takes extreme care when communicating with their sellers, it’s ridiculously easy for the agent/seller relationship to become adversarial. (Here’s a blog I wrote several years back about it.)

But first, let’s define “Adversary” or “Adversarial.” In the context of Conflict to Cooperation discussion, an adversary isn’t necessarily an enemy or even someone you’re negotiating with. No, an adversary is simply anyone who is standing in the way of an outcome you desire. And you’d sure like to help them see your perspective! And work with you accordingly!

Unfortunately, an awful lot of traditional real estate training teaches us to manipulate or coerce clients and colleagues into seeing things our way by using objection busters and memorized closing scripts. But is that really the best approach? Does ANYONE appreciate being manipulated or coerced with such techniques?

Um, no.

As Dave Ramsey often says “Those convinced against their will are of the same opinion still.” Fortunately, there is a better way! A way to create a win/win attitude between you and your potential “adversaries” where everyone comes out feeling, well, like they won/won! And that’s the subject of this Conflict to Cooperation series… stay tuned for more!

posted by on Working with Sellers

A few weeks ago, I started writing about the Go-Giver real estate agent – how we in our industry can apply Go-Giver principles to our business. To read earlier posts, see the links at the bottom of this blog!

Here’s a quote from the introduction to “Go-Givers Sell More” by Bob Burg and John David Mann:

It’s not about you, it’s about them.”

Mr. Burg and Mr. Mann explain that success in sales is not due to “mastering the close” or having a “dazzling presentation” or the ability to “shoot holes in any customer objection from fifty paces.” It’s about being a real person – a person who “enriches, enhances and adds value to people’s lives.” As the Go-Giver fictional Realtor(R) Debra Davenport says “You want people skills? Then be a person.”

Okay, so this is where today’s blog begins…

“Listing Presentations, How to Lose them from Hello!”

Yes, I watched Jerry McGuire recently.You Had Me at Hello

Real estate agents always want to know how to do a better job at their listing presentations, especially if they’ve lost out on a listing or two recently. They wonder if perhaps their presentation materials need to be fancy-schmantzy-ed up, or if they need to do a better job explaining why they’re better than their competition.

After all, isn’t that what sellers want to know? How totally awesome WE are? And, the better we are at telling them how awesome WE are, the more likely they’ll be to believe us?



As counter-intuitive as that may sound, a seller prospect probably doesn’t care much about how awesome we are. He may not even care if we’re better than the competition, at least, not at first.

What’s that old saying? “No one cares how much you know until they know how much you care?”

That applies perfectly here. When you waltz into a seller wannabe’s home, say “hello” and then whip out your Power Point presentation, three-ring binder and put on your presentation face, you’re sending a pretty clear message that you don’t care much about your audience. It’s all about YOU.

No, it’s not, Jennifer! I’m there to help the seller! My fancy Power Point presentation and three-ring binder are all about the seller and his needs!!


No. Nice try, but… No.

Think about it. Your “audience” (the seller wannabe) has a Problem. He is considering hiring you to Solve that Problem. But if you don’t have a clear understanding of his Problem, you can’t possibly address his Problem. And you can’t have a clear understanding of his Problem unless you take the time to learn about it. And you can’t take the time to learn about it if you’re doing all the talking!

Besides, no one believes you when you tell them how great you are, anyway.

Wanna stand out from your competition? Let them go in with their fancy-schmantzy Power Points, three-ring binders and presentation faces (and subsequently bore the audience to death).

YOU go in with a sincere desire to help. Your competition won’t stand a chance.

rospecting – If It Feels Wrong, Don’t do it!
Mr. FSBO – You’re An Idiot and I’m Not!
Have You Read the Go-Giver? You oughta!

posted by on Jennifer's Best, Prospecting & SOI


Quoted with permission from Go-Givers Sell More by Bob Burg and John David Mann:

“You may have been taught that to be successful in sales, you need to “step outside of your comfort zone.” Let’s reexamine that idea. If you push yourself to a place that makes you uncomfortable, chances are pretty good you’ll end up making the other person uncomfortable, too. Consciously or not, they’ll sense your discomfort – and attitudes are contageous.

We human beings tend to resist discomfort; in fact, we’ll typically do anything to avoid putting outselves in uncomfortable situations. Why base your entire career on something your strongest instincts tell you to avoid?”

One fine day last spring, I got a phone call from a real estate agent whose name didn’t ring a bell.

This agent whose name didn’t ring a bell small-talked with me for a few minutes, while I racked my brain to figure out if he was someone I should remember.

Well, when the small-talking was done, he asked me if I knew anyone moving to his town that I could refer to him. Ahhhhhh, sez Jennifer, Now I get it. He’s prospecting. Well, I know it’s hard to believe, but I didn’t happen to know anyone moving to his area, so I told him he could send me an email with his contact information and I’d be glad to let him know if that situation changes. He bade me farewell and hung up. And I never heard from him.

I thought it was pretty funny, not to mention an abysmal waste of his time – cold-calling someone and asking for referrals – and then not even following up?? Interesting strategy.

But over the next month, I got more such calls from agents around the country. Agents whose names I DID recognize; agents who were followers of my philosophy which specifically advises against any form of referral-begging. All asking me if I knew anyone moving to their area.

Now I was confused. What was inspiring this flurry of referral-begging activity?

I gently tried to dissuade the callers from making more such calls to their spheres of influence, but they all seemed determined and even enthusiastic about it.

Well, okay. To each his or her own. Far be it from me to talk someone out of a prospecting technique they’re excited about.

It finally dawned on me that these calls must be part of a corporate training program. My assumption was correct – there was a program making the rounds where participants were instructed to call 100 people per day (or maybe it was per week) and ask for referrals.

Whatever. I think it’s a ridiculous strategy to abuse friendships with any sort of referral-begging, but apparently I’m in the minority there, at least in the world of real estate training. I’ll just say that I don’t like it when it’s done to me, so it’s a given that I will never do it to anyone else.

But the epilogue to this story is that I heard from one of the agents again the other day. Was she calling to hit me up again for referrals to her area? Nope. She was calling to apologize for doing it the first time. That she’d felt sick to her stomach doing it, not only to me, but to the other dozens of friends and acquaintances she subjected her pitch to. She is concerned that she’d actually damaged her friendships and was asking for advice on how to repair that damage.

My friends, if it feels wrong DON’T DO IT. IGNORE the well-intentioned (?) coaches and trainers and brokers who say you have to venture out of your comfort zone in order to succeed. Because there’s a difference between overcoming a fear of something new, and doing something you feel is wrong. A BIG difference.

And you know what? You can tell the difference if you’ll only pay attention to that little voice inside of you. It knows what it’s talking about!

Stay IN Your Comfort Zone!
Work with What You Have – You’re Wonderful Just the Way You Are!
Be Yourself, Have More Fun, Sell More Real Estate

posted by on Jennifer's Best, Prospecting & SOI

(The other day I promised to do a little series on applying Go-Giver principles to real estate – while this blog wasn’t written with that in mind, I realize that it DOES indeed reflect a Go-Giver philosophy! So, let’s consider this the first in that series, k?)

I was just talking to an agent who is going through a corporate-sponsored FSBO training program.


It’s typical stuff. Under the guise of being helpful, the program advises you to scare the guy to death about everything he doesn’t know about selling a house. Bring in a stack of complicated contracts and disclosures, “just so that he’ll be prepared if an offer comes in.” Include intimidating documents that he won’t actually need at contract (like a deed of trust and personal property bill of sale) just to beef up your pile. Provide a “helpful” info-sheet about the dangers of letting strangers into your home.

Again, your basic FSBO scare-tactics.

And again, sigh.

Hey, someone decides to FSBO their home because they think they can do it. They think they’re smart enough to do it and they don’t see the point in paying some smarty-pants real estate agent a whole bunch of dollars to stick a sign in the yard and do an open house. In most markets, they can pay a few hundred bucks to get on the MLS and borrow a For Sale sign, so they’re good to go.

And you know what? Maybe they are smart enough. But it doesn’t matter if they are or they aren’t; what matters is that they think they are. So, when you come in with your brow all furrowed with faux concern and your “helpful” material in hand, all you’re really doing is insulting the seller’s intelligence. You’re basically saying “You’re an idiot for trying to sell your house yourself! You can’t possibly succeed without me because I’m SO much smarter than you are.”

Oh, I know that’s not what you’re saying, but that’s what he’s hearing. And we wonder why FSBO’s can be hostile to us smarty-pants real estate agent types!

How about let’s be straight with the guy? If you think you can actually help this guy sell his house, then PROVE it to him. BE helpful without strings attached. Authentically CARE about his situation instead of mastering that look of faux concern. Be genuinely willing to walk him through contracts and answer his questions. Provide informative market reports to help him price properly.

Contrary to popular belief, demonstrating your expertise by sharing your knowledge won’t eliminate the seller’s need for you. I hope not, anyway; shoot, if it’s so easy to sell and close a house that we can explain it in an hour or two, that seller truly DOESN’T need us!

No, being cheerfully and genuinely helpful, caring and GIVING is gonna go a whole lot further with a suspicious FSBO than all the scare tactics in the world!