In commercial real estate brokerage, try to add value to all the activities and conversations that you have with clients and prospects. Sales, leasing, and property management are all the same; go that extra bit further with listings, inspections, feedback and negotiations.
Every client contact experience should be special, so you can then grow your real estate business in the right way and for the right reasons.
Today there are plenty of other agents just looking to take your listings away from you and or to influence the client away from your recommendations. Clients and prospects are valuable to your real estate business.
Set Your Engagement Rules
Follow the ‘rules of client engagement’. These are some good ones to start with:
- Keep the client fully appraised of all transaction activity and offers
- If you have exclusive listings on your books, then spend more time with all the specific clients and owners of those properties
- As a promotional campaign commences keep the client briefed on enquiry, campaign momentum, and local area marketing
- When you have undertaken an inspection, let the client know about the ‘third party’ feedback.
- Provide plenty of ‘comparable property information’ from the location and across the property types
- Write plenty of notes from meetings, telephone calls, and negotiations
These are simple rules, and perhaps you can add to the list in other ways. Importantly, create your rules that you can use with clients and prospects. These are then the ‘rules of engagement’, and they will help you with client conversions and interaction. Quality communications and professional business practices prevail.
It is interesting to remember that a small amount of ‘added value’ in customer and client service will help considerably at the time of a property transaction and negotiation.
There are many different characters in a successful commercial real estate sales team. That being said, the characters all require management and direction. Rarely will you find a good sales team without its challenges. It is the job of the sales manager or agency principal to bring the best performance out of the team given the characters and the skills of the individuals.
A healthy sales team can be built around the following strategies:
- Make sure that you have a good mix of skills in the team relating to your local area and property type. Certain properties require particular skills across sales, leasing, and property management.
- Every sales team will have its strengths and weaknesses. Understand what they are and work with them or through them.
- The sharing of skills between individuals will be helpful. It is a good process to introduce trainee cadets or sales cadets into the team structure. The top performing agents can then be the benchmark or the learning leverage to help new people get into the industry and move ahead.
- Your sales territory, town, or city is likely to have specific requirements of property knowledge, negotiation, marketing, and documentation. Merge a training process into the weekly sales team meeting so that everyone can learn the critical skills and strategies needed to put successful sales or lease transactions together.
- Practice helps everyone improve. Role playing and team discussions will help everyone understand the pressures of the market and the changes to enquiries. Nothing remains the same in our industry. Throughout the year there will be plenty of changes to adjust to when it comes to rentals, prices, documentation, methods of sale, and methods of lease. The right choices and training will help the team achieve more success from the local area.
- Accountability is a big issue in commercial real estate today. Top agents take action and understand the need for accountability. Every member of the sales team should be held to task when it comes to things needing to be done, and information to be shared. A top sales team is one that works together and wins together.
- Personal budgets and performance plans are part of the commercial real estate process. Every agent within the team should have a realistic budget set within their area and skill base. Every month the performance budget should be checked against the actual results. When any weaknesses exist in the team they can then be quickly addressed; don’t let poor performance exist for too long without taking action to fix the problem.
- Head off any conflicts and disputes in the team early. A poorly performing agent or uncooperative agent can soon disrupt team performance. A degree of competition and achievement between the sales agents is always useful, but lack of cooperation and respect is not needed.
- Leadership is a big issue when it comes to the performance of the team in commercial property today. The leader of the team should have a complete understanding of property market conditions, negotiation standards, business processes, and team performance. There must be a good degree of respect in both directions when it comes to the team leader and the members of the sales team.
- Any individual sales agent or broker, they should be tracking results in commissions, listings, meetings, and prospecting. They should also be defining the ideal client and customer to focus on. Over time the quality of listing will allow market share to improve. Ask questions of every member of the team to ensure that they have the right targets and results in mind.
- Administrative activities in commercial real estate today can be quite demanding and intense. On that basis it is wise to have administrative support people to back up the sales team. In that way the successful salesperson can get into the market more effectively and find more leads and opportunities.
- Time management is something that all agents should personally control. Every day should be effective and optimized for find new listings, and creating client contact.
Given all of these things, there are plenty of things to do in helping a property sales team improve over time. Commercial real estate today is a changing and evolving market with the pressures and opportunities across sales, leasing, and property management. Help your sales team to develop the skills and penetrate the market at a high level.