So, you have the instruction, the contracts are signed and the sales process begins. Think about the expectations you have set for your Customer – are they SMART? Making a goal specific means addressing the Who, What, Why, Where and When of what you want to do how you are going to achieve it, by setting this out from the outset you have not only managed expectations but also created a relationship of trust;
M – Measurable
A – Achievable
T – Timely
A specific goal has a much better chance of being accomplished than a general goal. Find out their motivations for moving, what would they anticipate being a “good offer” and how quickly do they want to sell? This will enable you to set a plan as to what you will try to achieve for the Customer. It is important at this stage to tell them what you are going to do, why you are going to do it and how you are going to achieve it. This will set the Customer’s expectation of the predicted outcome and will therefore ensure that you have mutually agreed targets.
You should choose a measurable goal which will enable you to track the progress – for example a targeted number of viewings per week will help you to establish concrete criteria for measuring the results to date. This goal needs to be stretched so that the Customer perceives that they have real commitment from you. If you set a goal and surpass it week by week, relay this to your customer and review – again this will make the customer feel you are working with them and not for them.
“Although you may start with the best of intentions, the knowledge that it is unachievable means you will likely stop giving it your best.”
Goals you set which are too far out of your reach, you probably won’t commit to doing. For example promising to deliver a minimum of 10 viewings a week is a little advantageous if you haven’t done your research; promise to attempt to achieve 10 viewings a week – setting this expectation will provide the Customer with a benchmark.
We all know that realistic means doable – devise a plan with your teams as to how you will achieve this goal; this could be through additional marketing, open houses or even applicant prospecting. Without a realistic goal, you have already failed in the customers eyes. By setting an unachievable goal of reaching 10% above asking price you have raised the bar and hopes of your vendor and therefore when an offer lands on your desk, 5% under the asking price they are less likely to accept – meaning that they/you could potential miss out on a sale. If Vendors expectations are not realistic, be ready to present facts figures and comparables to back up the goals you have set.
Although putting an end point on your goal gives you a clear target to work towards, it also in my opinion is by far the biggest mistake that agents make. Promising to sell a house in 4 weeks provides an immense amount of pressure on you and your teams to get a sale and could compromise on service and most importantly the overall sale price. Allowing a reasonable amount of time to sell a property is acceptable and a small margin of time frames is usually forgiven – this is what agency agreements were made for! However, setting unobtainable timeframes will only result in disappointment and a feeling of remorse from your vendor – had you taken the time to sell their property would they have achieved a higher asking price?
These are all key comments we receive from Vendors who have been on the market for several weeks, poor control over the specifics and goals for the sale can leave a Vendor feeling deflated and as though you haven’t listened to their needs. Take the time to follow the 5 points above to make your Vendors expectations a reality.