Active Rain July 21, 2011

Call. The. Manager.

Watch dogI see an interesting trend on the blog dashboard this morning from colleagues across the US- poor conduct by agents, and understandable incredulity by the authors about it. I agree. If an agent won’t present an offer, return a call, or just behave, it is a problem with an unattracive domino effect. I myself have had many a problem, for example, with agents who won’t allow me to show their listings, typically by indifference, and it has strained my standing with my own buyer client. And when someone puts an unethical impediment between you and dinner, that is bad

There is no one size fits all solution, but one rather under-discussed move is to simply call the agent’s broker or manager. As a broker-owner myself, anything that is a red flag for liability is a huge concern and top priority. In many cases, a call or email to the branch manager or supervising broker will get that call returned or offer answered, and often quickly. While the response may be slower by a few hours, putting it in writing in for form of an email is pretty effective. 

I’ll be the first to acknowledge that the manager may not be useful. I have had my share of shoulder shrugging, milquetoast losers without the backbone to handle the very people they were hired to handle. That is for another article. But if the manager has a half a clue, they’ll get a result. You may not like the result, as even managers will spin and talk fast to preserve an in house sale for example, but it also puts them on notice that you are no doormat, and that you won’t tolerate unprofessional conduct. 

It is a shame that we have to engage these sorts of discussions in our industry, but it is a fact of life until stndards are raised meaningfully. I can tell you this much: anyone that calls me on an issue with one of my team members can rest at night that I won’t stop drilling for answers on the matter until I hit water. Problems are training opportunities anyway, and brokers should be the go to people when their agents cause them.