Helping People Make Good Decisions

When people think they made a good decision, they are usually happy with their sales associate and will refer him or her. How do you help them get to that point?

By Larry Kendall, author of Ninja Selling and chairman of The Group, Inc.

What is a good decision? Most would agree that a good decision is one where the person is happy with that decision 30 days later and would make the same decision again. When people think they made a good decision, they are usually happy with their sales associate and will refer him or her. When they think they made a bad decision, they will often blame their sales associate and may feel they were sold. It is in our best interests (and theirs) to help people make good decisions. Good decisions are key to repeat and referral business.

A Formula for Good Decisions

In Ninja Selling, we have a formula for helping our clients make good decisions. We’ve found that people who make balanced brain decisions—those that combine the head and the heart—seem happiest with what they decided. A balanced brain decision is where the customer uses both their emotional (right brain) and analytical (left brain) in balance.

Buyers often regret decisions that are too impulsive (emotional) and then suffer buyers’ remorse. Or, they often miss out if they are too analytical (paralysis analysis) and can’t make a decision. Their non-decision becomes a bad decision.

The Analytical Brain

Your client’s analytical brain (left hemisphere) is most powerful when it’s focused on just three to five criteria. It can handle more variables than that, but with more than five, it begins to slow down, and above nine, it goes into paralysis analysis. Many real estate professionals unknowingly confuse their clients by giving them too much data. As a result, the client gets confused (too much data) and needs to think about it.

Here are some common examples of overtaxing the analytical brain:

With Buyers

Showing more than five homes in one showing sequence. After the fifth home, buyers can’t remember the first
home. If circumstances require that you show more than five homes in a day, make sure your buyers are ranking the homes and have their top three favorites. This can be a rolling top three, where they can take out a favorite and substitute a different one. This process focuses the buyers on just three houses at a time.

With Sellers

Real estate professionals commonly confuse sellers by giving them a stack of MLS sheets. And when sellers get confused, their emotional brain takes over, and they blurt out, “Our house is nicer!” or “We need more money.” Instead, focus sellers on the five determinants of value: price, location, size, condition and amenities.

The Emotional Brain

The emotional brain is creative and processes a massive amount of data at the nonconscious or intuitive level. Decisions are based on feeling. How does the house feel? How does the decision feel? This is a very important part of the decision.

The analytical brain sets the priorities, criteria and boundaries around which the decision will be made. This is the context for the decision. Then, the emotional brain (right hemisphere) can decide on the content of the decision. A balanced brain decision is a combination of the head (criteria) and the heart (feeling). Here’s the formula for a well-balanced brain decision:

Help your client set the criteria of their three to five most important factors in the decision. As an example, ask a buyer, “What are the three most important things you are looking for in a home?”

Within these boundaries, if it feels good, do it! If your buyer finds a home that has their three to five most important criteria, and it feels good; then, it’s probably the right home for them. It’s as simple as that. You will have happy clients and an abundance of referrals.

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