What Life’s Cureballs Have Taught Me – Part 1

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Remember when I said I didn’t understand why people would want to be entrepreneurs with all the ups, downs and drama? Well, much like life, running or starting a business comes with obstacles and some you see happening, while others blindside you.

Case in point, the last few weeks I’ve dealt with a few challenges with some clients new and established. With my past clients and ANY clients, I work very hard to ensure they know every aspect of their home sale or home purchase has been carefully reviewed, examined and considered. It may sound cliché, but I value the relationships I’ve formed with every person in this industry I’ve met with and or done business.

So when a past, satisfied client initially agrees to have me sell one of their houses only to decide to list with another Realtor, without a defined reason, it strikes me to my core. I didn’t take it competitively, but instead very personally. Granted, maybe there was a friend or family member who just got their real estate license, and so my clients might’ve felt like they needed to support their contact’s new venture, and I do understand that.

What’s hard for me though is I pride myself on the 15 years of experience under my belt. I know my past clients won’t get the same level of service or industry knowledge with the new agent. Be that as it may, I respected their decision, and wished them all the best.

The other punch came from a potential client who received one of my marketing pieces, in the mail. Their call came in on a Monday and they scheduled to meet on a Thursday, of the same week, which gave me time to prepare my presentation and gather essential documents.

The curveball came the night before the meeting when the client called and said they’d already listed their house with another agent. I asked if they’d indeed signed an agreement with another Realtor and they said “yes”. Wow. I didn’t even get a chance to speak with them or show the value I could bring.

Granted this is the nature of the industry I’m in, and I understand it, but it nevertheless hits me hard to lose business. I’m not a pushy salesperson with high-pressure tactics, but I did come to find out the agent they chose probably was perhaps making the clients feel like they had to sign then and there. Maybe the new agent made some promises to the prospects which were too good to pass up.

I  personally handle the entire process with my clients both buyers and sellers.  This isn’t always the case when working with agents now.  There are teams and often times a client will work with several individuals through the process.  That isn’t always bad.  I prefer to follow the transaction through to the end. I pride myself on knowing this area, understanding what certain things can influence a buying decision, being able to help those new to Idaho navigate their surroundings by answering questions, and just being present.

Be that as it may, these setbacks caused me to reflect, do some soul searching and see how best I can change up what I’m doing at present. It made me re-evaluate things, compare the other agent’s methods to my own and confirm this market is not the same one I was in 15 years earlier., nor even the same market we were in 12 months ago. We now have over 5200 licensed agents in the valley, and some of them are incredibly new, very part-time and only looking to sell a home here or there. I feel this can be a disservice to people relocating to this market.

Being a professional, being passionate about what I do makes these curveballs sometimes hard to handle, but every day is a new day. Everything happens for a reason, and these challenges are meant to teach us something new. There are ways we can become better. There are ways we can improve.

I’ve been blessed to have a strong and positive mental attitude which has carried me through some dark times. Coming out of something hard, with a lesson and new insight, is something I’ve been fortunate to be able to pass on to my children as well because not everything in business or life will go as you plan. You have to be able to hit those curveballs as best you can even if you’ve only got a flyswatter. Who knows,  you can even park one over the fence if you swing hard enough!

This blog post has been more raw than most. It’s my promise to myself to always be authentic with those around me.

Read “What Life’s Curveballs Have Taught Me – Part 2”

-Alei

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