My great uncle Boyd was a Dentist. I was an invincible and VERY rough and tumble youth. My Grand Parents and Great Uncle lived in 2 side-by-side houses on a beautiful 4 acre property on one of Nashville’s premier streets. The family had owned those properties “forever”, and my Great Aunt and Grand Mother were both born and raised in the older of the 2 houses. I remember stories of surviving the great depression by raising Chickens and “living off the land” with a magnificent garden. I was most amazed by the asparagus growing along the fence row. I loved going to Sunday lunch EVERY Sunday and was amazed by their “clicker” (TV remote control) . . . and that day when I visited, and they showed me their new COLOR TV (The first in the neighborhood. (Yes! I AM “that OLD”)
One day, while playing there, I fell and dislodged a tooth. Luckily, it was a “baby tooth”. In those days, any day that I didn’t bleed or hurt myself wasn’t a good day . . . I just picked myself up and kept playing. On this day, my great Uncle witnessed my fall and approached me. He was a very gentle, soft spoken man, and he simply said: “Barry – I’d like to invite you to my “office” to take a look at that tooth.” Well now . . . an invitation I couldn’t refuse because I had never been in his office. Turns out, (of course) he had a Dentist’s chair in his office. I hopped into that chair and opened WIDE, so he could take a look.
30 seconds later, that tooth left my mouth with ZERO pain.
I could have declined his invitation, but I didn’t even think of that possibility much less the fact that a DENTIST was about to mess with my teeth . . . I’ll never forget that “honor” he bestowed upon me by offering an easy solution to my pain.
This is the power of invitation . . . Every invitation honors the recipient with choice.
That was nearly 50 years ago, and I’ve never told this story to anyone.
Why did this story surface now?
We are all just on the other side of 2 very awkward weeks each “split” by Christmas then New Year Day . . . not optimal conditions for “productivity”, so I had lots of time to think about how to “tackle” all of the fantastic “initiatives” I have planned to implement throughout the year.
My excitement for my decision to shift some focus towards “real estate sales” is palpable. For the past several years, working with Home Buyers and Sellers was a rarity for me because I was of the mind that I would need to focus 100% of my “business time and energy” at Building Pareto Realty and coaching the Vital Few Paretozoans. My mindset shift was a “product” of wanting to keep myself “relevant” in the subtle shifts of the market that only an active Real Estate Sales Professional can sense
There’s one part of this that I dreaded. In “sales”, the conventional wisdom is that we sales people must “Lead Generate” – “CAPTURE Leads – “CONVERT Leads” – “SERVICE Leads” – “CLOSE leads” . . . and we Principal Brokers must “RECRUIT” agents to join our firms in the the same way as our Sales Lead Generation.
This bothered me – Our “Prospects” aren’t wild animals whom we must capture and domesticate.
Instead . . . when we sense that there’s someone in our sphere of influence experiencing some “pain” (my tooth) requiring them to make a significant change (Move to another house or Agent moving to another company) . . . Let’s “INVITE” them for a conversation to learn if we can be of service to help them work through to resolution.
Inviting requires more “emotional investment” than lead generating or recruiting because we’re not likely to extend an invitation to someone we don’t think will be a “good fit” for our “party”.
Give it a try – Invite more and recruit less, and I’m betting your batting average of working with the “right people” will increase precipitously.
You’re hereby invited to connect with me to explore the issues and opportunities around whatever impending change(s) you may be facing that may require a move of residence or Real Estate Firm.
Uncle Boyd, thank you for your wisdom (Even though I didn’t “get it” til 50 years later)