WIN­NING THE COM­MU­NI­CA­TION GAME

Elite Agent - - CONTENTS - Caro­line Bold­er­ston

Eric Shin­seki said it best: “If you don't like change, you're go­ing to like ir­rel­e­vance even less”. Josh Phe­gan takes a look at the fu­ture of real es­tate in a fast-paced world.

The last 10 years have rad­i­cally re­shaped the way we live. The adop­tion of mo­bile phones, so­cial­i­sa­tion of our re­la­tion­ships and the am­pli­fi­ca­tion of re­mote work have also changed the way we do busi­ness. Soft­ware is eat­ing the world. What was once done by a team of peo­ple is be­ing au­to­mated, forc­ing fewer peo­ple in the process to de­liver the ser­vice. It's chang­ing job roles to be more hu­man, per­son­alised and in­ti­mate. We have all the in­for­ma­tion we need at our fin­ger­tips, thanks to Google, mean­ing that con­sumers don't need an­other mar­ket re­port, up­date or agent in their street to­day. In­stead what they need is some­one who's pre­pared to ask the ques­tions around their dis­sat­is­fac­tion and vi­sion, to help the cus­tomer make the first steps.

With the adop­tion of tech, we're mak­ing ap­point­ments faster to build rapid rap­port and help­ing cus­tomers to make de­ci­sions face to face.

It's forc­ing the in­dus­try into a cor­ner. In our rush to be amaz­ing on so­cial, we've for­got­ten the ba­sics of what makes a busi­ness move. To be suc­cess­ful in busi­ness you have to make sales, and the first sale that's made ev­ery day is book­ing the ap­point­ment.

No one's ask­ing what hap­pens when we get to the point of dig­i­tal saturation – we're al­ready here. More and more ef­fort is needed. Be­fore I put in any tech­nol­ogy, I ask, 'What's the prob­lem we're try­ing to solve?'. Plenty put in tech or go all-in on so­cial be­fore they ask the ques­tion or even de­fine if the prob­lem's worth solv­ing.

What the savvy agents are do­ing is build­ing out the tech to au­to­mate the work­flow to de­liver on their cus­tomer ex­pe­ri­ence. And this where you need to start. De­fine your brand. It's not a logo; it's a set of cus­tomer mo­ments that are either care­fully cu­rated or not. Think in mo­ments, then see what tech­nol­ogy you can use to au­to­mate and im­prove them for the cus­tomer. In the UK, on­line ap­point­ment book­ing is a mas­sive driver, yet it's hardly taken off here in Aus­tralia.

Most of the off­shoring we're see­ing hap­pen in the prop­erty man­age­ment and sales ad­min­is­tra­tion spa­ces will end up on­shore again as au­toma­tion makes those roles re­dun­dant, or the con­sumer forces a more hu­man ex­pe­ri­ence for the fees we de­mand.

One thing that's cer­tain is that tech­nol­ogy doesn't recog­nise booms or re­ces­sions; it just makes progress. In your busi­ness, I'd be sur­prised if you didn't al­ready have 20-plus ap­pli­ca­tions in what's called your app stack. It could be as sim­ple as Drop­box for file stor­age and Slack for team com­mu­ni­ca­tion. Your app stack is al­low­ing your work­force to be more re­mote, yet the evo­lu­tion of the work­place with global work­places like WeWork sug­gests we ac­tu­ally want to be to­gether to do our work. What we're build­ing is flex­i­bil­ity, and a mo­bile­first ap­proach to make work­ing on the road be­tween ap­point­ments even eas­ier.

NO ONE'S ASK­ING WHAT HAP­PENS WHEN WE GET TO THE POINT OF DIG­I­TAL SATURATION – WE'RE AL­READY HERE.

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