May 5, 2011

Looking for an Edge?

"The great aim of education is not knowledge, but action."
Herbert Spencer, British Social Philosopher

Negotiating isn't easy to learn. The American culture doesn't exactly support the idea compared to many of the other world cultures. Yet in an industry like real estate, the ability to negotiate is an important skill and one that many Buyers and Sellers count on and expect from their agents.

I was honored to spend the last two days learning about the concepts of negotiation with fellow real estate educator Ed Hatch. Ed is a CRS (Council of Residential Specialist) instructor and was the guest of the Ohio NRT Companies in Columbus and Cincinnati

I'd like to share a few ideas and concepts that I learned from Ed's presentations with my Realtor's Toolbox readers today. Please understand...just reading a few sound bytes from the classes on negotiations doesn't make you a better negotiator any more than staying overnight at a Holiday Inn Express will make you a successful ball room dancer. If you want to learn more about negotiations, I highly recommend you seek out the class The New Negotiating Edge and see if it's coming to a city near you.

People are predictable - What can you do to eliminate chance from your relationships with customers, clients and helping them achieve their goals?

Whenever you say or feel that you "must have something," you have just created a poor position from which to negotiate.

Good marketing should be designed to help people choose you and your services before they need it. Once this occurs, much of the need for people to negotiate has been removed.

In order to truly advance in your career or life, you should first determine those things that are non-negotiable and build your schedule and business plans around them. Remember what German playwright and poet Johann Wolfgang Goethe said. "Things which matters most should never be at the mercy of things which matters least."

The best negotiators are those who always think "relationships" before they think about "transactions."

When you're looking to survive, having more options is the surest way to do so.

Seek to be someone to people rather than something

Know what business you're in. Are you selling the Magic Carpet Wizard or a set of encyclopedias?

Use more "ands" instead of "buts"

Learn the "Duke Tilt" to demonstrate active listening

Understanding the clients "Cognitive Mind Map" is critical to your success. Are you able to answer the five critical questions that lead to clients making a comfortable decision?

Guide people with the right questions. Don't lead them with the right answers.

Until you go to your opponents side of the wall, you'll always struggle to reach an agreement.

"Rapport if the tunnel through which truth passes"

Finally, just because something is valuable and relevant to you doesn't mean it will be to your customers or clients.

Thanks again to my buddy Ed Hatch for spending a few days with the hard working associates and managers from Coldwell Banker King Thompson and Coldwell Banker West Shell. It's always great to learn from others so thanks for sharing your wisdom.

Until next time...keep building relationships, solving problems and having fun.