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2010-04-01 16:49:32

Quality Face Time Can Help Your Bottom Line


Be honest: When you’re face-to-face with a client, just how good are you, really? Are you truly listening? Are you responding appropriately? Are you working as effectively as you can, not only with clients, but with fellow Realtors, home inspectors, mortgage lenders and everyone else you work with to get your job done?
Really knowing how to work with people can mean the difference between a healthy bottom line and a meager one. After all, real estate is the quintessential people business.
Fortunately, social scientists have uncovered a lot of facts that have led to useful tools that can help you understand people and how to work with them.
I’ve noticed many of these personality profile tools tend to put people into one of four basic boxes. I call them: The bosses (domineering types); the followers (non-boat rockers) the engineers (information junkies) and the people people (people lovers).
I bet if you thought about it for a couple of minutes, you could put your friends and family into one of those boxes. The key, of course, is once you get potential customers into their respective box, you need to know how to work with them so that you achieve your goal of a listing or sale.
An important aspect of this is to be able to bend your own personality enough so that you appear to be more like the type you’re working with. Remember this: people like and respond more favorably to people who are most like themselves.
I’m not suggesting you turn yourself into a fake. Just emphasize the part of you that jibes most with the other person. In truth, we’re all an amalgam of these four boxes – we each have a little boss in us that can identify with the actual boss types out there. So when you’re faced with a boss, let your inner boss shine.
Here’s a quick cheat sheet that should help you better understand the four types and some tips on how to best work with each:
The Bosses – All about results. Bosses are practical, get-it-done-now types. They talk fast, act fast and get right to the point. With bosses, hammer home the results you’ve delivered and focus on how you’ve solved problems quickly and efficiently.
The followers – All about getting along. They want everyone to be friends and have a good time. They don’t want anyone to get ruffled feathers over any potential problems. With these folks, emphasize the more personal nature of the business and less of the cold facts and numbers. Also, highlight how you can work with them in selling their home – as a team that gets a long well with everyone involved.
The engineers – All about information. They seek the facts and tend to take their time and they’re very deliberate, cautious and by the book. Give them a bunch of data in a logical, systematic way and then give them time to make a decision. And don’t rush them into a decision – these folks hate the in-your-face salesperson.
The people people – All about, you guessed it, people. They’re outgoing and enthusiastic. Talk about other people you’ve helped and specifically how you’ve helped them. And talk about all the other people you’ll be working with to sell their home.
Yes, understanding people, listening to their needs and wants, and responding appropriately all take work, but because this is a people business, it’s a must. And the better at it you become, the better living I believe you’ll make in real estate.   
Let me hear from you. Is your face-time with clients quality time? Please share any comments or questions you have about this article. Send me an e-mail at
Bob Corcoran is a nationally recognized speaker and author who is founder and president of Corcoran Consulting Inc. (, 800-957-8353), an international consulting and coaching company that specializes in performance coaching and the implementation of sound business systems into the residential or commercial broker or agent’s existing practice.
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