CH: Welcome Teresa to 5 Minutes With… a blog series I’m writing that talks to a variety of business people about their work, their marketing challenges, and some learnings for our readers. Can you give us a short summary of your working life and what led you to Real Estate?
TH: I started my career in customer services, so it was my enjoyment of helping people and going the extra mile that lead me to sales. I wanted to be out of the office and interacting with people. I love meeting new people, I believe our lives can be enriched by what you can learn from other people.
CH: I’ll be really honest with you… I generally dislike the approach that Real Estate agents take…. it’s often the exact same as the next person, and quite boring. That’s a challenging statement…. any thoughts on that?
TH: Unfortunately as in any industry we get tarred with the same brush, everyone seems to copy someone else’s style as in anything. I think what’s important to me is being authentic, what you see on line or video is me. There is a fine line between professionalism and coming across as unprofessional so you do have to be careful how you portray yourself to the public. It is hard to be original, we all offer the same services.
A lot of the time what I do in particular is not seen but the extra mile is well and truly travelled in most transactions. When you truly care about the people behind the homes and your goal is to get them to where they need to be, there is huge satisfaction in that.
CH: Have you got any real estate agents anywhere else in the world who you think are doing a great job that you are learning from?
TH: Yes most definitely. I have some fellow Harcourts agents in Wellington who are having a big social impact on their community. There is another agent in Auckland who is humble and has done the hard yards, the self belief, the discipline, it is definitely not an easy career if you cannot handle rejection.
CH: You’ve done some really impressive guides that help people get their house ready for sale… what is the BIGGEST mistake you see when people are preparing a house for sale?
TH: Most homeowners are fairly on to it, first impressions count, street appeal, people look at the house from the street if they like what they see they want to see the inside of the home. Unless you have to rush your house on to the market for personal reasons, take the time to get it right, give it a good water blast, add some colour in pots at the entrance way, having the inside and outside as clean as possible.
CH: Any key lessons with marketing yourself as a brand that you could share with other professionals?
TH: You have to ensure what you brand yourself with aligns with your beliefs and passions. Take time to find out and employ professionals to develop logos, don’t bog yourself down with admin related tasks. Do what you do best and get out there.
CH: Thanks Teresa, all the best and keep on marketing yourself!