Page 5 - NBIZ June2021
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Merriam Webster’s online dictionary provides this   to help my memory and to allow me to quickly access past
         definition of ethics: “the discipline dealing with what   conversations.
         is good and bad and with moral duty and obligation.”     For me, active listening provides clear communication.
         Exploring further, the word ethics is from the Greek   In the book Be the Red Jacket, I created an acronym
         word “ethos” meaning “custom, habit, character or      for CLEAR to strengthen the communication process
         disposition.” simplifies the definition by     through five active listening skills.
         stating, “ethics is a system of moral principles. They
         affect how people make decisions and lead
         their lives.”
            When people observe ethics, they do so by observing
         other’s behaviors. This is important in sales because it is                  C
         one’s behaviors that often lead to a successful “close” or a                Clarity:
         lost sale.                                                    You must listen for clarity so that you can
            In sales, the first interaction is the most important.     separate the tangibles from the intangibles
         What this initially means is the phone must be answered          and the knows from the unknowns.
         or the voice mail, email, or text must be returned. During
         recent interactions with other Realtors™ and experiences                     L
         with past executive coaching clients, many times the
         failure to answer the phone is the number one reason for                   Legitimize:
         the sale not moving to that next step in the sales process.  You must listen to legitimize the real issues.
            The repeated phrase of “answer the phone” is probably         Many times, perceived problems are
         the most common sales behavior mentioned to me                        symptoms in disguise.
         because many Realtors™ fail to do this. How the phone
         is answered also determines if the salesperson will                          E
         have the opportunity to move the caller to the next
         step, the marketing phase. This marketing phase of the                      Emotion:
         sales process is where trust and knowledge begin to         You must listen for emotions. Here is where the
         be realized by the “suspect,” “prospect aka sales lead”   verbal words (and non-verbal gestures if you are in
         or “qualified sales lead.” People buy from those the      person or “zooming”) along with the syntax (speed,
         know and trust. When “Googling” the word trust, this       pitch, volume, and emphasis) are very important.
         unsourced definition states that trust is “the firm belief
         in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or                A
         something.” In sales, the potential customer or client not                 Agreement:
         only has trust in the salesperson, but also in the product   You must listen for agreement to find common
         or solution.                                               ground from which you can build ongoing trust.
            A quick review of one’s trust factor would be to ask
         existing clients or even colleagues to rate you on a scale of
         1 (poor) to 5 (outstanding) with regards to the following                    R
         statements.                                                                Retention:
            B I am reliable.                                      You must listen for retention because the information
            C I am truthful.                                        you are receiving is critical to your sales success.
            D I have proven my ability to you.                       In many cases, the facts that you are receiving
            E  I have the strength to fulfill my obligations or    have been heard by others, but they simply failed to
              promises to you.                                     listen. Active listening is all about truly hearing and
            F  I have demonstrated courage in our interactions.     then remembering what the other person has just
                                                                   said. This last listening skill tip is the reason I use a
            The last statement is one I added because sometimes it          notebook for all conversations.
         takes courage to move the sales process forward as well as
         courage, to be honest.
            The first contact lays the foundation to build trust
         or distrust. One of the keys to building trust is active   For me, the second most important key is to do
         listening. For years, I kept a notebook and wrote down   what you promised to do. This is embedded with in the
         keywords, buying parameters, the decision-makers, the   definition of ethics specific to the focus on obligation.
         time frame, and of course the budget. This behavior has   When the salesperson indicates or better yet promises to
         continued in real estate. Later, I transcribed my notes into   send something, to call someone, and to get back to the
         the Customer Relationship Management System (CRM)      prospect, he or she must honor that moral obligation.

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