By Mike Pallin, President of The Floyd Wickman Team One of Floyd’s more famous sayings is, “There’s nothing special about special people. It’s what they do that makes them special.”
If I could be allowed, I would add my opinion that there’s nothing special about most special people. Some rare and unique individuals actually are born special. (Like Dominico Siciliano!) They are just born with an indescribable something that sets them apart from most of us ordinary folk. It could be called luck, or charisma, or personality, or gift of gab, or silver spoon - but success appears to come easily to them.
They don’t need training. They don’t need management. They don’t need motivation. They don’t need direction. And they don’t need to develop character. It all just happens for them.
They are one in a million.
If you are recruiting salespeople and one of these “naturals” falls into your lap, the smartest thing you can do is stay out of their way and do your best to keep them happy. Most importantly, keep in mind that these rare birds are the exception and not the rule. They are extraordinary. Look instead for the ordinary characteristics of successful people in your recruits, and help them apply these traits to the practice of real estate.
There are three qualities that stand out in ordinarily successful salespeople, and they are easy to spot when evaluating talent for your team. Success in real estate has nothing to do with age, race, gender, height, weight, looks, education, experience, IQ or birth sign. It does have to do with characteristics.
The first of these is reliability, something which cannot be taught or instilled in someone. It is either there or it isn’t.
Do they show up on time for the interview? Do they do their homework between interviews? Do they return your call or email or text? This may sound simple, but more business is lost due to a lack of reliability than for any other reason. Ask them for, and look for, evidence of reliability in their past.
An unreliable hire will cause you to spend half your life wondering where they are, apologizing for them, and cleaning up the mess they leave in their wake.
The second characteristic to look for is persistence. This one can’t be taught either. The rule of thumb in life, and especially in sales, is that persistence wins out over most difficulties. Persistence is about resiliency, the ability to bounce back quickly and not stay stopped by challenges, problems and obstacles. Persistence is about a willingness to keep trying even when you don’t feel like it. And persistence is about handling rejection with emotional maturity.
Managing someone without persistence will require you to have a Masters degree in psychology and a PhD in motivation. Look for evidence of challenges met, obstacles overcome and problems solved in their past.
And the final characteristic or ordinary success is nice. Nice means pleasant. Affable. Likeable. Happy. Nice salespeople show that they care. Nice people are good company. Nice people are givers. Mean and grumpy will succeed, but only short term. And nice balances out the rough edges that can come with being persistent.
Real estate needs more nice people. Add persistent and reliable to nice, and you have a recipe for ordinary success.