They Follow Blindly, Even If……..

They Follow Blindly, Even If……..

"They follow blindly, even if.....

even if they are badly led."

Eddie Jones, outspoken England R.F.U coach, on his perception of English players being followers, rather than leaders.

"Because they get told what to do all the time..they're told what to think and what to say.  You're robbing them of the opportunity to grow as people."

That's also my perception of estate agency training in the U.K and for realtors in the U.S.A

A script, a tip, a quick fix. Estate agents following blindly, even when they are badly led.

Badly led, they seem to be.

The world's supposedly top estate agency trainers, Tom Ferry, Tom Panos and Grant Cardone, Craig Proctor and Brian Buffini. The advice?

Practice your scripts, call thirty people every morning, door-knock, increase your spend on lead generation, follow-up with your database, copy the million dollar agent program, change your mindset. Use this script to handle objections.

Where's that got estate agency in this country?

In the bottom three of least trusted professions, that's where.

Eddie continued.

"Neil Craig (England Rugby, Head of High Performance) agreed with my observation that the English, in general not just in sport, want to be told what to do. He had noted that, occasionally, one of my fellow coaches would say "Just tell me what you want me to do, Eddie."

I would respond "Well, mate, I actually want your opinion. I want you to bring some different thoughts to the table. I want you to think & then act. I don't want you to do things only on my say-so.  You're robbing them of the opportunity to grow as people."

Not just as estate agents & realtors, but as people. That's a serious allegation.

Estate agency has become such a blinkered profession. Rarely is much considered outside of that insular world.

Which probably explains why it has remained such a staid and uninspiring profession.

Estate agents don't grow as people. In their quest to be told what to do and say, they stagnate.

The skill-set taught by the Tom Ferry's of this world is really just second-hand information. It's not original thought. Information that is freely available almost everywhere. If you have curiosity to seek it out.

What's worse, is that unless Tom comes up with something'new', something to claim as his own, his clients aren't going to grow. They don't have ambition - only desire.

There's so much opportunity to learn from other sectors.  It's what the trainers do. Without ever going far enough.

Take writing.

Plenty of agents write, or should write, a blog. 

But lack the confidence to more fully immerse themselves in this world.

A world of words that can inspire.  That can move the hearts and minds of vendors.

Instead they write prescriptive copy that is simply words on the page.

Can they learn to write better?

By breaking down the parts and understanding the writer's tone of voice.

By observing the craft of writing, rather than simply ingesting information.

Of course.  It just requires desire.

Same with video.

Do they observe from T.V and film how the message is delivered.

Not the message.

How it is delivered.

My guess is not.  It's all about the message.

"Deliberately choosing people around you is how you can sculpt yourself. You want confidence? Hang around confident people. You want to learn any skill, any craft?  Hang around people who practice those things and do them well."  - Nicolas Cole

You don't need to pay a 'coach' to learn new skills.

It's all out there on Google and YouTube.

Coaching. per se isn't the problem for the estate agency sector.

Being "badly led" is the problem.  Being fed information that positions you as a commodity.

Encouraged to be better.

Instead of being different.

There are plenty, happy to exhibit their 'trophies' from grateful vendors and from appreciative bosses.

The bottle of bubbly, the box of chocolates, or the certificate for Best in Breed.

Who are they trying to fool?

"We talk about being very good at our craft, as though it is some bizarre exception. Plenty of people are good at what you do.  Very good.  Perhaps as good as you. Full credit for the work you've done and the skills you bring. But it's not enough."   - Seth Godin

It's not enough.

And no amount of training is going to make it better - if you're badly led.

Here's why so many realtors and agents choose the wrong path.

The #1 problem for the estate agency sector isn't about raising standards. The world doesn't need better estate agents, or better realtors.

Vendors don't so much care about your competence as they care about your character.

That problem needs fixing first.

Allow them to know, like and trust you.

Before you meet.

Personal Brand does that.

Vendors either buy into you.  Or they don't.

"I have zero interest in convincing anyone of what I've just said.  I put it out there in order to be historically correct." - Gary Vaynerchuk

I can count on one hand the number of agents that do Personal Brand well.

Far fewer, though, is the number of estate agency trainers that "bring some different thoughts to the table."

The advice of these coaches hasn't, so far, created a culture of respect, trust and nurture.

Quite the opposite. It's created an environment where competition, greed and survival of the fittest is encouraged.

Where scripts from What You Say Matters (Agent Script Book),  a Door Knocking Dialogue, from Tom Ferry are this bad.

"How are you today?  I wanted to give you a quick update on the real estate market, last month in xxx we had # sales, of which * sold above asking price.  Were you aware of this? And, we have more buyers then (sic) properties for I was curious, have you had ANY thoughts on selling? Do you happen to know anyone who has had thoughts of selling? Thanks so much, If I can ever be of service, here's my card...have a great day!"

Wake up realtors.  You're paying good money for this garbage.

Plenty will say that it works.  But, that's not the point.

Standing on the corner, soliciting every girl/guy that walks by might work.

But you're regarded as a jerk.

Does it never occur to you that this unsolicited 'public begging' is damaging not just your reputation, but the reputation of the industry as a whole?

That, my friend, is being badly led. I hope it changes.

Thanks for reading. If you disagree with my comments, I'd love to hear from you.  Especially if you're an estate agency trainer. I wouldn't like to think that I'm being "robbed of the opportunity to grow as a person."


Chris Arnold

Stories that inspire; words that persuade. Peeling back the layers on Who you are, rather than What you do. Personal Branding for those with the courage to be transparent.

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