You’ve just finished a listing presentation and you’re feeling really confident. You have a great track record in the neighborhood and have recently sold one of their neighbor’s house. Besides, you and the sellers really hit it off. They even went as far as to say they plan on listing with you, but need to think about it after they’ve interviewed the last agent. Then, to your dismay, you get a call and your next great listing has been given to your competition. What a bummer! If you’re active in real estate listing homes, this has happened to you. You’ve probably asked yourself, “where did I go wrong?” You’ve been unable to come up with a logical explanation and now your only hope is to wait and see if it expires so you can get another shot at the sellers.
The above scenario is very frustrating. How can you improve if you don’t know what you did wrong or, why your prospect chose another agent? You can spend weeks second-guessing yourself to no avail. The reason for the loss escapes you. The question you should be asking shouldn’t be directed at you. It should be directed at the lost client. If you don’t know why you lost, you can’t improve before your next appointment. The only way to find out what you can do differently the next time is to ask your prospect to share the reason they chose someone else over you. Next time this happens to you, ask:
“Mr./Mrs. Seller, I wanted to thank you for giving me the opportunity to offer my services to you. I respect your decision, but like most professionals, I’m always looking to improve and I was wondering what it was that made you decide to go in a different direction?”
An agent once told me that after years of doing business with a client and a friend, they dropped her and gave their listing to another agent. She built up enough confidence to ask why and was told that she had been abrupt during the listing presentation. She let the seller know that she greatly appreciated the seller’s honesty. She said because of a divorce, she had been under a great deal of stress and didn’t realize she was being nasty. Had she not been told how she sounded, she would not have corrected the issue and would have lost a great deal more business.
Don’t try and guess how to improve as an agent. You’ll never truly know until you go right to the source and find out why then address the issue.