Brokers: Be Ready for Objections
How well do you respond to concerns from would-be team members?
Change isn’t easy for most people. Whether it’s a top erformer closely identified with your competitor or a potential recruit who’d have to take a leap of faith into a
new career, the decision to make a move can be overwhelming.
You can make the possibility of professional transition for
agents more appealing—and improve your recruiting metrics—
by listening carefully during recruiting discussions and providing
compelling responses to recruits’ concerns. Here are six common objections with suggestions for how to handle them.
“I’m happy where I am.”
Rare is the broker who hasn’t heard this one.
“With many salespeople, there’s a fierce, sometimes misguided,
loyalty to the broker they’re with,” says Allan Kuipers, branch
manager of Coldwell Banker Danforth Northgate in Seattle. His
office, which he built from scratch over five years, now has 208
salespeople. “They’ll say they’re happy where they are or that
they love that broker.”
Kuipers acknowledges the comment and promptly moves
past it: “That’s great! We want only happy people to come here
because if you’re unhappy there, you may be unhappy in our
office, too. Let’s focus on your broker’s role in your retirement.”
This transition gives Kuipers an entrée into an area where his
company excels. “Consider what’s going to be good for your ca-
reer down the road,” he tells recruits. “Are you maximizing your
profit so you can walk off into the sunset when you’re ready?
Would you like a program where you could save or invest more
dollars for when you retire?”
Kuipers’ pitch has great appeal for salespeople who haven’t
considered long-term goals, like building a better retirement
plan. “We make them see how this decision is going to affect
their bottom line when it comes time to retire,” he says.
“I’m happy” is an objection Keith Robinson, chief operating
officer at Better Homes and Gardens Mason-McDuffie Real
Estate in Pleasanton, Calif., also hears frequently. “I say, ‘Of
course you are; most talented people are happy where they are.
I really want to spend time getting to know each other to see if
someday we can have a fit,’” he says. “I want to be where they go
if they make a change.”
“I’m making more money than ever.
Why change things up?”
Another common refrain from experienced salespeople is that
they’re doing well financially, so they don’t need to look elsewhere. Salespeople who say this could be missing out, contends
Sue Cartun, designated broker, operations manager, and partner at the six-office, 400-salesperson Keller Williams Southern
Arizona in Tucson. “Sometimes top producers have a limiting
belief,” she says. “They think they’re at the top of their game.
But there is never not a next step. I tell them we can show them
“I’ll lose business
how to take the lid off their income level.”
Cartun says that can happen in a number of ways. Perhaps
salespeople should build a team or expand their current team.
Or maybe they should expand their geographic reach. “I’ll say,
‘Your team has the model, systems, and people down. Let me
show you how to take that to the next market,’ ” she says.
The answer to this concern is a transition approach salespeo-
ple can see and trust. Cartun tells salespeople not to waste
time worrying. “I tell them we have staff in place to make their
transition seamless,” she explains. “We’ll have your signs made.
We’ll make sure your collateral marketing materials are redone.
We have a checklist. You take care of talking to your clients; we’ll
take care of all that stuff.” Marge Kane, regional vice president
at Edina Realty in Edina, Minn., says her company addresses
agents’ concerns about the need to notify past clients of the
move by sending out e-cards and creating new websites for the
agents. “We can quickly announce an agent’s change to our
company,” she says.
“Your company’s too big
Kane hears the “you’re too big” comment from both new and
experienced salespeople. “People automatically assume bigger
means less connected,” she muses. “In fact, we can demonstrate that collaborating and networking bring them more opportunities. So I tell them a larger agent population and systems
to network and support each other are huge benefits.”
how to . . .
break down recruiting obstacles