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Empathy: The secret sauce to making it through closing

02/03/2017

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I couldn’t get people across the finish line when I started in real estate — which is a big problem if you don’t earn a salary.

So I talked to the president of the company where I worked and asked him what I could do to close deals. He told me: “If you need a trick, then you didn’t do your job in the first place.”

That helped me focus on the process instead of trying to push people into closing.

Real estate is emotional; even the smartest investors make emotional decisions, and they can get away with it because real estate can be that good.

All that anyone wants in real estate — and in life, too — is to feel like they’re understood.

Everyone is crazy, seriously. Everyone in the world is completely insane, including me.

But most people have a pretty good reason for their particular brand of crazy. As soon as I started focusing on the process above everything else, I realized how important it is to validate someone else’s feelings.

People can’t choose their emotions. No one can be “wrong” for feeling a certain way. Life taught them that they should feel the way that they’re feeling in any given situation. Once you validate their feelings, it’s easy to change their minds because they know that you’re not judging them.

I know, that’s not exactly how they do it in Wolf of Wall Street. I’m sure it’s different for stockbrokers who sell pieces of paper to people that they never meet face-to-face.

But let’s just say there’s a reason that residential real estate sales are dominated by women and gay men. Straight guys are taught that emotions are for the weak, and I was no exception until I learned differently. Changing that mentality is going to be my No. 1 goal with my agents. The ones who can learn that will become the most successful.

Nick El-Tawil is founder, broker and executive director of Tawil & Team, a Manhattan real estate brokerage. You can follow him on Twitter and learn more about him on LinkedIn.

Email Nick El-Tawil

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