As realtors, our relationships with people are the foundation of our business. Relationships lead to referrals, which make our businesses sustainable. Otherwise, real estate is just a job, not a career, and we are (effectively) unemployed after each and every deal.
The art of establishing relationships is one of most difficult practices to master. It requires a lot of heavy lifting, but it’s well worth the effort.
The key is the understand the one secret to building meaningful relationships (and really, it’s not such a secret): Getting close to people.
I know, that’s a little vague. But before I explain in more detail, let’s back up a bit, and first talk about what actually makes a relationship meaningful.
4 Stages of Building Meaningful Relationships
Meaningful relationships are established over time, and have four key stages:
- Initially, someone is aware of you. The person has heard your name in conversation, seen your advertisement, or has perhaps attended your conference presentation.
- Next, the person knows you. You sat at the same table for lunch, discussed business, compared notes, and traded some personal information.
- In the third stage of the relationship, the person likes you. You have demonstrated who you are and revealed what is important to you and you share some attributes and interests.
- Finally, the person trusts your advice and seeks your counsel. You engage regularly with the person, share expertise and experience, and have demonstrated that you are trustworthy.