Who’s Making the Excuses?

COVID-19 has certainly made business interesting, but many agencies are still reporting good sales results. Not all, I might add.

Prior to the pandemic, agencies were complaining of a shortage of listings. Those complaints died down as agency leaders had bigger priorities to focus on, but once things settled down the same complaint returned: “Listings are tight” is again the common cry.

It’s one thing for salespeople to use this excuse, but it endangers profit if leaders buy into any excuses.

Who’s making the excuses in your agency – your salespeople or you?

Every time I hear this complaint, I ask the same question: “What are you doing about it?“.

Here is what I’ve discovered.

  • Agencies complaining of a low level of listings are those doing the least amount of marketing.

By marketing I don’t just mean social media posts.

I mean direct mail, leaflets, newsletters in print and digital. When you are low on stock, that’s the time to ramp up your marketing, not cut it down or out!

When an agency is already low on listings and then chooses to cut its marketing, that simple decision, to ‘save money’, loses money by throttling enquiry.

It’s not a smart management decision to become invisible in the marketplace. Ever.

  • Agencies complaining of a low level of listings are those that do the least amount of prospecting.

This is another area where salespeople and leaders make excuses.

The problem with prospecting is that for many salespeople the results don’t happen quickly enough. They’d rather see the boss spend company money advertising and then sit and wait for enquiry.

Salespeople like that should be sitting and waiting in your competitors’ offices, not yours!

But even worse than salespeople making excuses is when leaders do.

I’ve heard leaders make excuses on their salespeople’s behalf – “Listings are hard to get now. I’m sure they’re making the calls“.

Whoa! Hold on there!

Ask yourself this question: are any sales being made in your area? Yes or no? And don’t say, “There are, but a lot less than three months ago“. Sales might be down in your AREA, but this is no reason why sales should be down in your AGENCY.

Why didn’t you get those listings? Why are you not speaking with those sellers who will soon list with a competitor if you don’t get to them first?

When you make excuses, you stop looking for solutions.

Don’t accept excuses from your salespeople, and never make excuses yourself.

You’re the leader. Lead!

Gary Pittard

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