Business Rule #3 ~ Don’t Make Your Clients Feel Stupid

by Nicole Mangina on April 14, 2011

Did you ever play the telephone game as a kid where a group sits in a circle and one person says something and it gets passed around the circle and then the last person says out loud what they heard?  For some reason it isn’t anywhere close to what the first person said.

This happens in business every day and can have a HUGE impact on your relationship with your clients.

Here’s an example of what I mean as it applies to real estate:

As an agent you are working with a husband and wife (John and Sally) to buy a house.  You just got word that the appraisal has been completed, it has been submitted to the lender and everything looks good.  You call John to let him know that the appraisal is in and everything looks good.  John then calls Sally to let her know and she has a whole slew of questions for him.  “Do you know how much the house appraised for?  What houses did they use as comparables for the appraisal?  Were they all in the same neighborhood?”  John doesn’t know the answers to the questions because he didn’t think to ask them.  Each time he answers “I don’t know” he gets a little more tense and a little more frustrated.  By the end of the conversation he feels stupid and he is angry with you for putting him in this position.

So how do you change that?  Anytime there are multiple clients you MUST call each one SEPERATELY.  This gives each of them a chance to ask you the questions that matter to them and takes the pressure off  of their relationship.   This is not about weather or not your clients are smart enough to remember what you told them or if they are good communicators or have a good relationship.  It is about you being professional and serving them each as individuals.

If you are in any other setting outside of real estate, assume that the person you are talking to has to pass the information on to another co-worker or boss before they can commit to your service.  Make sure they have all of the information they need (write it out if you can) so that they feel empowered when they present the information rather than frustrated and stupid.

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