Viewing by month: February 2012
As a real estate agent you will no doubt understand that much of your role involves managing the expectations of your vendor clients. Communication is a big part of this process, and it is important that you understand your clients’ preferred methods of communicating from the outset so as to ensure that the sales process is a smooth one for all parties.
With so many forms of staying in touch now available, it is likely that different clients will favour different forms of being kept in the loop. While some will expect daily verbal updates, whether it be over the phone or in person, others may not even be in the country and could simply require regular activity summaries via email.
For this reason it is important to establish from the outset your clients’ preferred method of communication when selling a property. This will likely make it much easier for you to satisfy the expectations of your clients and potentially make your job much more streamlined.
For example, some vendors may stipulate that they only want to hear about certain events in the sales process; knowing this preference from the beginning can help you to save time and get on with the job of selling the properties of these clients successfully.
Alternatively, you may have a client who wishes to be verbally updated about the progress of the sale of their property every step of the way. With an understanding of this preference, you can put effort into maintaining regular contact with this client, ensuring they are highly satisfied with the level of service you provide.
The Seller Login program offered by CENTURY 21 through the eSales platform in offices is a very handy tool that allows real estate agents to keep their clients up to date with the sale of a property. With real estate agents entering information into the program about progress made and activities taking place, sellers can login as little or as much as they want to remain in the loop. This program is particularly helpful for people who want to remain informed, yet don’t necessarily need to speak to their real estate agent daily.
Communication with your vendor clients is a big part of your role as a CENTURY 21 real estate agent, and the means and frequency with which you contact your clients often has a significant impact on their final levels of satisfaction with the service they have received from you. In establishing from the outset your clients’ expectations as to how much or how little they wish to be updated regarding the sale, you will have a much better chance of ensuring they are happy with you as their real estate agent.
In today’s increasingly busy world, never before has it been as important to be organised. This is particularly true for real estate agents as urgent tasks and meetings can arise quickly. By being organised you should have more time on your side and a better ability to accommodate such immediate needs, without compromising your other responsibilities. In addition, improving your organisational skills at work and home can lead to increased levels of efficiency, more time for personal growth, and reduced stress.
There are a number of simple ways for real estate agents to be more organised.
• Plan ahead. Look at your week (and the weeks of any family members) on the weekend prior (or at a time that works for you) and map out what tasks needs to be achieved, identifying the time and effort that is required per activity. This preparation should help you to ensure that all necessary tasks are completed before they are due, in a stress free manner.
• Start early. If possible, make an effort to arrive at work early to allow yourself time to clear your desk space and emails and identify the day’s priorities when the office is at its most quiet. This is usually the optimal time to get work done as there little to no distractions.
• Maintain a to-do list. As has been touched on in this blog before, keeping an up-to-date, prioritised task list can help you to make sure all necessary jobs are identified and completed on time.
There are many benefits that may arise for those real estate agents who make a conscious effort to remain organised. These can include:
• More time for development. Real estate agents who can maximise their efficiency by being more organised generally find they have more time for business and personal development; examples can include contacting prospective leads, or physical exercise.
• Reduced stress levels. Real estate agents who can ensure work is completed on time avoiding a last minute rush to make a deadline, will be in a better position to avoid increased, unnecessary stress.
• Improved reputation. Organised real estate agents who can be relied upon to complete tasks on time will generally appear to be professional and proficient to both peers, management and clients.
Ultimately, being organised is not too difficult to achieve if you have the right systems in place. Finding a few extra minutes over the course of a week to organise yourself can be very beneficial to real estate agents, in both a professional and personal capacity.
As a real estate agent, communication is a key aspect of your role. To achieve success you must first convey your own skills and achievements to secure listings, after which you must market properties and negotiate prices in order to secure the best sales results on behalf of clients.
It is important to note that any communication that takes place in order to achieve these goals comprises not only what you say out loud, but also the various forms of body language and non-verbal cues. In fact, these ‘silent’ forms of communication make up a significant proportion of the overall message you convey.
The messages that can come across through your body language can be both positive and negative, and thus influence how other parties react to what you are saying. It is important to understand some key forms of non-verbal communication, so that you can ensure your verbal message is complemented, not confused, by your actions.
For example, everybody likes to feel as though they are being listened to and that their fellow conversant is interested in what they are saying. Simple signals such as maintaining eye contact and nodding at appropriate points can help to show that you are listening. At the same time, actions such as folding your arms, looking away or even engaging in other activities (such as text messaging) can show a lack of interest on your part.
Remaining aware of your body language and the signals you are sending is very important, particularly when you are acting in a professional capacity. Despite some positions being comfortable, such as folding your arms, it is important to understand the message you are conveying and to try to train yourself to action positive body language.
For real estate agents, incorporating simple forms of positive body language into your daily forms of communication can help you to improve in your role and enhance the relationships you have with clients, prospective buyers, management, colleagues and even competitors.
There are countless forms of non-verbal communication that you could find to be helpful in your role as a real estate agent. If you take the time to do some research, you could find a whole new set of tools to convey your messages in a more meaningful way – perhaps even improving your levels of success in doing so.
As a busy CENTURY 21 real estate agent, you no doubt have a million tasks on your mind at any one time, all of which are important and must get done. Those agents who already have a physical To-Do list system in place will understand how necessary these can be for organising tasks and ensuring they get completed on time.
For those real estate agents who don’t have a task list system already in place, and even those who do but would like to know how their system may be better managed, you may like to consider the following tips:
1. Order your tasks by priority and get the most important tasks out of the way first. This can help to reduce your stress levels and ensure you remain on top of things that are due imminently.
2. Avoid having a large number of tasks in front of you at the one time as this can be overwhelming. Instead, you may like to have two lists – one complete to-do list (perhaps on a weekly basis) that contains everything you are working on, and another daily to-do list with a more manageable amount of tasks on it.
3. Break larger tasks into a series of smaller steps. It can be tempting to procrastinate and avoid tasks that seem difficult. Smaller targets are usually easier to achieve in a shorter period of time, and ticking them off could see you gain momentum and complete the entire task in a shorter timeframe.
4. Spend ten minutes at the end of each day assessing what you have done, crossing things off, and planning your tasks for the following day. This clarity around what needs to be achieved before you even begin your day should help get you off to the best possible start.
Everyone has their own system to keep their tasks in order – some like to keep it on their Smartphone where it can be managed on the go and synced across multiple platforms, while others prefer to write it down where completed tasks can be satisfyingly crossed off.
The efficient management of a to-do list is definitely a valuable skill for a real estate agent to master. Having clarity around what needs to be done, and when it needs to be completed by, can help you to avoid procrastination, achieve goals more quickly and reduce levels of stress.