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In the Spotlight: Taking Advantage of Every Opportunity

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By John Voket

Are you looking for a new strategy to master a slow market? According to Doug Collins, President of Prudential Collins-Maury, Inc., the key is to maintain a steady source of well-priced listings in good condition. “Be honest with your agents and address issues head-on,” says Collins. “You must also force your agents to focus their efforts on the listing side of the business.” Read on for more of Collins tips for motivating agents, determining where to distribute marketing dollars, and more.

Doug Collins
Prudential Collins-Maury, Inc.
Collierville, Tenn.

Region served: Greater Memphis Tennessee and North Mississippi
Years in real estate: 28; I’ve owned my own company for 25
Number of offices: 3
Number of agents: 91
Best tip for dealing with difficult customers: Handle the issue head-on and call them back as quickly as possible.
Most effective way to motivate agents: Everyone is different; you need to determine what motivates each person individually.
Best tip for running a successful meeting: Create broad involvement with an interactive agenda that draws people in and keeps their attention.
Best advice you ever received that you continue to give agents: Seek first to understand, then to be understood.

What are your best strategies for dealing with a slower/retracting market?
Be honest with your agents and address issues head-on. You must also force your agents to focus their efforts on the listing side of the business. If they maintain a steady source of well-priced listings in good condition, they will assure themselves of opportunities.

How do you determine your marketing spend and how does this break down between print and online? How has this ratio changed in recent years?
If you believe, as I do, that every situation has an opportunity, then you go looking for the opportunity. When I saw that agents were doing almost no advertising of their listings, we launched our List to Last Campaign, which involved increasing our advertising, especially print. Not only did this help our agents secure more listings, it also drove more buyer calls to them.

What are two fundamentals that you feel are essential to your company’s continued success?
As Jim Collins said in his book “Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don’t,” they start by getting the right people on the bus, the wrong people off the bus and the right people in the right seats. We strive to get and keep the right people in the company who will lift those around them and help them to their potential. Our management team’s commitment to looking over the horizon to see how we can best help our agents achieve their potential now and in the future is also essential. My management team meets weekly to crunch the numbers, discuss what’s happening in the marketplace and provide the vision and strategy so that our agents can spend their time serving buyers and sellers.

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