Privacy is a rare luxury when you’ve chosen to be a Realtor. As real-estate specialists, it’s our job to be front and center, travel the communities and really get to know our clients. In turn, we hope they get to know us, recommend us and come back to us for repeat transactions.
Unlike many other service industries, the “product” we sell isn’t just our individual expertise, or our ability to weed through the intricacies of buying and selling. Instead, in the quest to win customer preference, we also engage in marketing initiatives that invite others to focus on us and the way we look. No, we aren’t models by any stretch, but we’re encouraged to put image first, placing our photos on cards and in advertisements, and always “dressing for success.” That means driving the “right” car, wearing the “best” clothes and carrying the “right” bag. The end goal is to send a message to complete strangers saying, “I’m worth it. I make a lot of money. You should be impressed with my financial achievements.” Pretty bizarre if you really think about it.
September is Realtor safety month, but for most of us, we think about this 365 days a year. And, because the industry somewhat dictates our self-marketing strategies, we’re always on high alert! I once worked for a broker who posed for photos in a fabulous business suit, fashionable spiked heels, arms crossed showing off her Rolex while positioned against her Jaguar. You’ve probably seen this same type of pose as well. My husband’s words (from a cop’s perspective) still ring true today: “What is she thinking? Now the not-so-good people in this world know way too much about her, or at least think they do.”
When my children were teenagers I bought them the book and the audio tapes called: The Gift of Fear. I had received a copy of this at a meeting for Sheriff’s wives when my husband was in office. Although as parents we preached awareness constantly, this book drove home some of our points. In short, listen to your gut and trust your gut!
Every day, people ignore their gut or that feeling that they get when something doesn’t seem right. That feeling when a stranger walks a little too close to us, a comment, or just the creepy vibe. That’s why I ask our agents to trust their gut, to be aware, to ask questions, to be prepared and know how to protect themselves. Safety is much more important than commission!
Don’t be surprised if an agent asks you to meet them at the office, present a copy of your driver’s license, or pose for a photo. Don’t find it odd that we may ask questions that seem a bit probing. We appreciate your understanding. Our ultimate goal is to find you your dream home, but safety remains the number one priority.
We’re not always glitz and glam. I am proud to work with agents who don’t mind a bit of sweat on their brow! We had such fun times at the First Annual Ft. Hamer Bridge Run, supporting our community and getting to know our neighbors! Make sure to stop in our office to get your souvenir commemorative koozies!