Somewhere in between Sales 101 and our first time in the "Sales Box" of a car dealership, most of us came up with what professionalism should and should not be. I think most decide, "whatever I just went thru in that dealership is what I don't want to do to people".
NAR has somehow led an industry that is wrought with lightweight sales training and has defined (better said, mislead) what should be the definition of professionalism. The behemoth organization's attempt at adding professional designations that require time and money by the "flock", but in reality add little value to an agents bottom line.
CRB or CCIM does not hold parallel value as "CPA" .The industry can try and pretend these cute acronyms mean anything. I always look at the top producers. DO they have these acronyms next to their name? Not many do.The reality is that a designation and education has always been lightweight and misdirected in the Realty Industry.
Maybe my own licensing test should have been a clue. I recall when I took my California Licensing exam that there was a multiple choice question on the meaning of "deciduous". Almost 20 years later that moment sticks with me. (I won't even answer what the definition means, but suffice it to say it has nothing to do with selling real estate).
So NAR, who cannot even properly define its own standards in anyway that is meaningful to its reluctant members, also must defend these same members.I wonder if one does not understand its core business of its members can actually pull off any sort of defense against a Department of Justice that is hell bent to bust up your main advantage and creation. Called the MLS.
You would think in order for NAR to defend its members requires a deep understanding of the business of selling property. NAR defending its members is much like The Feds inability to prosecute Microsoft for being a monopoly.It was dead from day one mainly because the prosecutes more than likely didn't know the difference of DOS and RAM, while NAR is clueless about the business of real estate.
My conclusion several years later after my exam was that this real estate business was being misrepresented by the "powers that be". There was way too much focus on what amounts to little in sales. But sadly, little is taught about how to put food on your families table.
Back in the late 80's I finally had dropped my 30 points of action presentation. I quit the fluff. My thing was calling expired listings. I got in the appointment and I "sold" them.
It was the late 80's early 90's and the market in LA had dropped 30%. Swear to God my presentation was so simple it was ridiculous. But it was the truth. I was selling the gospel of truth and they either bought my preaching or they didn't.
The traditional lines of professionalism were out the door. I was there to make them feel the pain of not selling, and feel the pleasure of moving. My partner called it my "12 minute presentation".
It started off as the market sucks, how bad do you want to move? Are you sure?
Then I showed price today and convincingly showed how the price is going down by the week and they needed to be in front of that trend, or they would have to lower the price in another week. OUCH!
I would have to help them pick their jaws off the floor.
Not one agent had given them this reality check. If they followed it they were in escrow in a matter of weeks as good prices always sold. If they didn't I explained to them they will be sitting in their home for the next five years or more.
Some signed, some didn't. But we had some of the best inventory in our our markets. And they sold.
I dropped the facade of them leading and I led. In the end that is professional.
So often we lose the meaning. Sales is leading. Not order taking. Even in the sales box of a car dealership it isn't that we find the leading as objectionable. It is the manipulation and lies that bothers us.
In the end, I am proud of the people I helped move. Otherwise, they would have been stuck for several years and even upside down in some cases.
Now not everyone has the finesse to play the direct sales game. Even though I played it, I did it out of desperation because my marketing sucked. It was all about survival.
What I did was sales at its most basic level. Today, the web has made it easier to capture mind share without the hard core sales approach.
So often though we put up a brochure website and call it marketing. It is akin to putting out a shingle and expecting the world to beat down your door (or "hit" your site). The masses hide behind suits and fancy cars without any closing ability. Unfortunately, most hide behind their websites in the same way.
The reality is as long as your ethics are intact who cares what angle you use as long as it works?
Leading often makes people uncomfortable. Yet, most are afraid of making someone uncomfortable. So I hear all the time how a forced opt-in to IDX or VOW is antithical to the anti transparency of the the web. (the geeks running the train again).
So often judgment and changes are made because one or two people give an opinion. Two people of thousands does not make for any statistical significance. Especially if you know these people. People that you know are the very worse samplings for a survey.
The best results are those tested against hundreds if not thousands of real samples.Until you measure one methodology on the web against another, you simply do not have a real answer.
The web can supplant that uncomfortable feeling of dialing for dollars and prospecting that every sales trainer going back to Jesus says you must do. But simply posting websites out there that look and say the same as the other jillion agents in your market is simply playing roulette.
This is why the blog can be so powerful and so often is just more web noise.
Are you leading or following?