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How to Get Your Commercial Real Estate Prospects Interested in Working with You

By Jim Gillespie | August 9, 2011

I was listening to an audio series that focused on both sales and how people can effectively build their businesses. During the program they talked about what sets effective salespeople apart from all the others, and how to best enroll your clients and prospects in doing business with you.

Here is what they said:

"The more that your clients and prospects feel that you truly understand them and resonate with their problem, the more they will want to do business with you. Therefore 90% of your job as a salesperson is having your clients and prospects feel that you truly understand their problem, and only 10% of your job as a salesperson is educating them."

This is quite profound.

So many commercial real estate brokers think their job is about providing people with information, educating them, and getting them to move towards closing a transaction. When what’s most important to your client or prospect, is feeling that you understand what’s really important to them.

Going through the motions of providing your people with information, educating them, and trying to get them to move towards closing a transaction, can make them feel like you don’t really understand them. Your communication can feel like you’re constantly broadcasting towards them, instead of it feeling like you’re constantly listening to them, and understanding what’s really important to them.

How many salespeople have you interacted with throughout your life, who’ve made you feel like they really provided you with outstanding service? How many salespeople have provided you with such an incredible experience of working with them, that you’ve felt compelled to tell your friends and business associates about them?

I’m guessing this is a pretty short list.

Listen to your clients and prospects and find out what’s important to them. Say things like, "It’s important to me that I provide you with outstanding service, so tell me everything that’s important for us to accomplish together in this real estate transaction."

Have them feel with certainty that you’re really listening to them, and have them feel that what you care about most is making sure that you take care of all of their needs.

There was a time when I was closing a transaction with a man who was an absolute legend within the garment industry, but he was a very difficult person to be working with. Whenever we’d get agreement on some of the terms with the people we were negotiating with, my client would begin changing his mind about what he wanted, and then he’d start blaming the other side for being so difficult. This was causing problems with everyone involved in the transaction, and I began butting heads with my client because he was such a pain.

Then there was a moment in time when, despite all of my frustration, I put aside my ego and decided I really needed to reconnect in my relationship with him. So I paused, relaxed, and then said to him, "What is it you want me to do that will have you feel that I’m providing you with the most outstanding service imaginable?" He was blown away by this and said, "That’s the most brilliant question you’ve ever asked me during our relationship!"

Asking him that question and listening intently to what he wanted to communicate to me, was a major turning point in closing the transaction. Now he felt that I was really reconnected with taking care of his own best interests, instead of us continually butting heads and disagreeing about his actions within our negotiations. And somehow at the same time, he backed off just a little from being a major pain.

So listen to your clients and prospects. The more that they feel listened to, and the more that they feel you truly understand what’s really important to them, the more that they’re going to want to work with you.


This Wednesday, August 10th, I’ll be leading a teleconference titled "Becoming a Master at Getting Exclusive Listings". During this teleconference I’ll be interviewing an outstanding member of both SIOR and CCIM, who’s averaged more than 75 closed transactions a year during his career. Before he became a top commercial broker he was an asset manager and a property manager, so he knows exactly what owners and decision makers need to hear from commercial brokers, in order to list their properties with them. If learning how to successfully land more listings is something you’d like to do, click here for more information on this teleconference. In addition, when you’re registered for the teleconference, I’ll send you the audio CDs, written transcription, and written highlights from the teleconference, all in the mail to you!


If you’re interested in one-on-one coaching to take your commercial real estate brokerage business to the next level, click here to contact me.

"Jim has me much more focused on doing the things that make me more money and he holds me accountable to make sure that I do them."

Greg Barsamian
Coldwell Banker Commercial

Click here to see more testimonials from my coaching clients.

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