Ask any high-producing real estate team if relationships with their sphere and Top 50 are important to their real estate business and almost all will say yes, even if they aren’t executing that at a high level. The challenge we often see is the gap between understanding that relationships with our sphere and clients are important, and putting that understanding into action.
We all agree that relationships are important, and yet, there is seldom any type of concerted effort to focus on and improve relationships. We send magnets or football calendars, but we shy away from acting toward elevating relationships. In fact, when we talk about elevating relationships, we often hear: “I’m not a people person,” “I don’t have time to really connect with people” or “I don’t want to bother my friends and family.”
When we accept those excuses, we lose sight of this: We should elevate our relationships to create deeper connections, to develop our tribe, to grow as leaders and as human beings, to create businesses worth having.
While it’s simple to run a business that operates on building and nurturing relationships, it’s not always easy. It has to be a deliberate and genuine choice you make as a leader and as a team. It’s one thing to understand what needs to be done, but committing to it and knowing how to do it is where things usually begin to break down.
A level of commitment is required when we decide to run a pillar of our business on our relationships. Plan on helping everyone on your team improve their communication skills by using role-play and practicing active listening. The ability to effectively communicate and connect is at the heart of any good relationship. Elevate the focus on relationships. Have everyone identify their SOI and their Top 50 and then make a plan to deliberately engage with them. Encourage agents to set up face-to-face time and commit to engage with their Top 50 at least once a month. Develop processes and create a culture that attracts and keeps relationship-oriented people (as opposed to just transaction-oriented individuals) on your team. Teach them the value of a client.
As you and your team engage with your Top 50 and SOI, remember:
- Be interested, not interesting. Ask questions about the person you’re getting to know.
- Pay attention to how you’re coming across. Remember to treat others the way they want to be treated.
- Really listen and pause so that you can reflect versus react.
- Stay in the moment.
- Enjoy getting to know other people for who they are.
- Wherever you are, be there. Be present in the conversation and with the person you’re with.
Bottom line, you have to choose to make elevating relationships a core competency of your team. Train on it and make a relationship focus part of planning and daily activities.