• It's in your best interest to be proactive and to anticipate the needs most people didn't even know they had.
  • Cater to the people you work with to the full extent of your ability, and you will be rewarded accordingly.
  • The people who buy your product or use your services are most likely the best to sell it as well.

You would be hard-pressed to find a real estate entrepreneur who doesn’t attribute their success to a good business plan — and rightfully so. A proven system is entirely capable of replicating success at any level.

In fact, I’ll take it a step further and go as far as saying that a business plan is absolutely essential. However, as important as a plan might be, there’s one fundamental factor that inevitably trumps even the best of strategies: the people.

When all is said and done, it’s the people (employees and customers alike) that make a company great.

Even the best ideas won’t be able to get off the ground without the proper supporting cast. Long-term wealth building, increased exposure, market dominance — none of this would be possible without a loyal contingent.

They are your team, clients, investors, friends, family and anyone intent on improving your position in today’s business landscape. There is a good chance that any success you have realized up to this point is their doing.

Having said that, nothing should be prioritized ahead of your customers and the people you work with — not even the services you provide as a real estate investor.

At the risk of sounding too cliched, real estate is a people business. You are investing in others more than the properties themselves.

The importance of including the general public (and people-centric intentions) into the daily routine of your real estate business can’t be underestimated. Fortunately, doing so is easier than you might think.

Give ’em what they want

First things first: you need to accept the idea that you might not always be right.  Subsequently, there is one business concept that still holds a lot of weight: the customer is always right.

Of course, there are exceptions to the rule, but for the most part, consumers are smart. They know what they want. It’s on you to provide whatever they need or face the alternative: becoming irrelevant.

Listen up

Your position within the real estate industry is predicated on the idea of serving others. There is no reason you shouldn’t pay attention to what they have to say. The last thing you want to do is let your tunnel vision prevent you from capitalizing on an opportunity that presents itself. 

Listen to what they have to say, and understand that their input can be just as valuable as — if not more than — your own. Before long, people will recognize your efforts and be more inclined to support your business

Show and tell

It’s not enough just to listen. You need to let them know their voices carry weight. Cater to the people you work with to the full extent of your ability, within reason, and you will be rewarded accordingly.

Remember, the people who buy your product or use your services are most likely the best to sell it as well. You just need to give them a reason to do so.

Go above and beyond

People will be more likely to recommend your business to others if your services provide more than they expected. Take the extra time to make sure your customers are getting the best experience possible.

A genuine approach will most likely receive a genuine response. In formulating a strategy to go the extra mile, don’t stray from the fundamentals: good service, quality information and a reason to come back should be more than enough.

Be proactive

It’s in your best interest to be proactive, and to anticipate the needs most people didn’t even know they had. There is perhaps no better way to grow your company than by positive word of mouth.

Place the people ahead of your services, and they will not only be fans of your business but also vocal ones at that.

Engage meaningfully

More so than ever before, today’s consumers feel the need to be engaged in the brands they trust. Subsequently, it’s up to you to make people want to spend time interacting with your business.

Recognize what separates your business from your competitors, and use it to your advantage. Just make sure you project yourself in a way that people will be receptive of, and establish a personality that people can relate to. In doing so, you will gain their trust and perhaps their business.

Real estate investors take heed: neglecting to place your clientele ahead of the your services could be a disastrous mistake. The second the people around you don’t take precedence over what you have to offer is the second your complacency will get the best of you.

Take a note from my book, and genuinely take care of those around you. Your business will be glad you did.

Than Merrill is the founder and CEO of FortuneBuilders Inc. and CT Homes. Connect with Than on LinkedIn or follow him on Twitter @ThanMerrill.

Email Than Merrill.

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