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Targets in Estate Agency

Over the years, I have come to the conclusion that targets are vital to the success of an estate or lettings agency .. but feel sometimes, estate and letting agency bosses focus to much on them to judge their staff.
Let me talk about the people closest to the coal face – the Neg. Negotiators are targeted on Viewings, FV’s/MA’s, Mortgage Appts etc. etc.  So let’s imagine we have a Neg called Jane. She goes the extra mile, often first to her feet, she often spends 10, 15, 20 minutes on her feet going through the different areas of the town on the wallpaper map wall with applicants, and as she has visited all the houses (often on her way home in her own time) unlike her colleagues who are out of the door in at 10 seconds after 6pm, Jane proactively solves buyers (and tenants) problems while they
browse the properties, taking the time to answer questions about the property they’re considering buying/renting.  Jane doesn’t go for the kill on the mortgage question, preferring to slowly bring in her Mortgage Arrangers name into the conversation and believing she will get them if she builds a relationship over time
If that interaction results in a viewing, FV, Mortgage Appt etc. Jane ticks the box on the system and this is how Jane’s performance is tracked.
.. but then another couple walks through the door of the agency a few hours later. Jane then spends another thirty minutes with that couple, exchanging valuable information about particular properties, but as she does that, the first couple that she saw ring in to make a viewing, but because she is going the extra mile, the viewing gets picked up by her colleague, the Vauxhall Nova driving shinny suited Wide boy Neg who doesn’t go the extra mile. Yes, he is lazy, yes he is doesn’t go the extra mile but he is quicker picking up the phone than Jessie James pulling a gun in the Wild West and lower than the belly of a snake …. Jane’s efforts will likely go unnoticed and unacknowledged by management as he books the viewing (and the Mtge Appt) because it was so nicely set up by his colleague
..and this is why I feel for you Negs, Valuers and Branch Managers that go the extra mile.
Every Negotiator is only as good as the number of viewings/fv/ mtge appts she (or he) have booked. This is the performance metric most estate agency managers pay attention to because it’s the thing their manager can easily measure.
..and this is where targets only go so far
Hitting targets can feel like progress, but much of what adds value to our businesses (principles, treating people like individuals, our own lives, relationships and cultures too) is indefinable and intangible
When we limit ourselves to believing that raw data tells the whole story in estate agency, we are missing opportunities to improve those things we can’t put a number on.
Just because stats and figures are easy to collect doesn’t mean it’s the thing that’s worth measuring. It’s important to question exactly how the stats we gather is helping us to achieve our estate agency goals before obsessing over what the numbers look like.