Thursday, June 25, 2015

Back to school

This past month, no, the past two months I feel like I've gone back to school. I have learned so much ... I feel like I am 28 again, like when we started Toop&Toop.

There is something weird happening here ... Toop&Toop celebrated our 30th year in business last month, and yet I have personally had more training, more coaching, more in field product testing and more learning than I've had for the past five years.

Right now, as I am writing this article, I am attending the Real Estate Best Practice Conference in Sanctuary Cove. Sure, Genevieve and I are Key Note speakers on 'The Changing Face of Real Estate,' but sitting through today's sessions has been such a wonderful experience. Hearing speaker after speaker share their knowledge is uplifting and motivating. Chatting to real estate icons from around Australasia is a privilege. There sure are some impressive people in our profession.

We think we are so clever with all the things we are doing in South Australia, and yes, we are up there, but it has been humbling to mix with the best of the best and hear their stories. No hype, no spin, just down to earth and real.

What's noticeably changed is the profile of the best of the best. Nice, straightforward, intelligent individuals, who are humble, appreciative and compassionate. In the early days for me, and those high performers of the time, we all seemed so arrogant, egotistical and as an industry were trained to exaggerate (a nice way of saying we had little respect for the truth). We were trained to take make-believe bids (dummy bids) at auctions and trained to be seamlessly deceptive, and actually took pride in being the best at deception. Vendors (sellers) joined in and with the benefit of hindsight it was a pretty ordinary way to behave as an industry. We even won industry awards for being good at it. How things have changed ... thank goodness.

Community was not in the vocabulary. None of the industry talked, or took time to worry about community issues in those early days of the 80s. 

I am sure plenty of older agents will disagree, but that was my experience. Some still think it was the 'Good Ole Days,' but today's top performer profile is changing fast.

Nice, honest, high integrity, community minded, humble, intelligent, educated, considerate and genuine now best describe today's real estate rock stars. The best are trained continually, well resourced and backed, many have degrees, and are passionate to improve the lives of people moving house. The new sustainable super stars understand that it is not about the money, it is about helping the community. These people trust that the money will follow if they do their job brilliantly.

I can think of exceptions, but I seriously doubt those money focused, self-centred operators will still be around by 2020. 

So, what key 'take-aways' do I have that YOU may be interested in (i.e. sellers, buyers, investors and renters in South Australia)?

Hang on tight. Get excited. I predict that the service levels you have been experiencing from your local real estate agent are about to be blown out of the water.

I see the next generation of agents completely redefining service levels and that both buying and selling, or investing and renting property, will be entirely different - BETTER - a superior experience. I can see Genevieve and Suzannah's era making our baby boomer era look like amateurs when it comes to the experience and emotions of moving home.

Our baby boomer era will learn from these younger generations/younger-thinking agents, as I am doing at the moment. The younger aged agents will however be forced also to adopt the great things that we older agents do better (like picking up the telephone), and I am confident they know this. The stars are already adopting our 'best practice' communication skills of old, with enthusiasm.

Assuming the next generation of real estate agents (and that actually has nothing to do with our birth date-age, but rather attitude-age) can learn to communicate face to face and also with their voices ... what I am seeing is exhilarating.

Some of the most impressive people I've ever met have been over the past two months. Some of my most profound learning has been over the past two months and I have experienced some of the most exciting thinking over the past two months.

Real estate is changing enormously. You can look forward to seeing some massive changes for the better, with new capabilities by year end at Toop&Toop. I can hardly contain my excitement for our clients.

Landlords, house sellers and yes, rental tenants as well ... get ready to be spoilt.


Regards,
Anthony Toop

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