How would you react to someone who directly challenged you on the basic patriotism of America — someone who said that American democracy was a farce, American people lacked moral principles to succeed in a global society and that the underlying values of our country were not worth fighting for?
For almost every American, the answer would be to strongly defend our county and challenge the person directly. Why? Because these are principles that we all hold so strongly to the core of our beliefs that we cannot simply let them pass us by without a comment.
In today's housing environment, the similar open-ended "attacks" often confront new-home sales professionals. Customers will comment on the value of buying versus renting and today's price versus a potential discount in the future — even the long-term benefits of home ownership. The problem is that many new-home salespeople simply choose to stand on the sideline and let these comments go unchallenged.
Remember, today's buyer can spot a phony a mile away. A customer has no interest in listening to a new-home salesperson's half-hearted attempt on the virtues of buying a new home when the salesperson really is fearful about the benefits of taking action today.
My rule on identifying sales success from potential candidates is to look first for genuine conviction that today's new home market is an outstanding value. Second, I look for honed sales skills. Both are important, but without enthusiasm on the wisdom of making a decision today, you are simple asking customers to pick your home over the competition.
Begin by challenging yourself and your sales team on their core beliefs on the merits of making a new-home purchase in today's market. Don't settle for, "If you're looking long-term, housing is a great opportunity." The direct question should be: Why a new home, and why today? You need to have your "elevator speech" ready, compelling, factual and, most importantly, genuine.
Don't be afraid to have an open discussion with sales team members who feel beaten down on why now is a great time to buy a home. As Warren Buffett says about smart investing: "Whether stocks or socks, I like to buy quality merchandise when it's marked down." Certainly, today is that day.
|John Rymer is the founder of New Home Knowledge, which offers sales training for new home builders and real-estate professionals. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org .|