3 Mistakes to Watch Out for When Asked, 'So What Do You Do?'
OK, so you’re standing in line in the supermarket, or you’re in an elevator, or you’re at a party, or you’re in a networking group. Sooner or later, someone is going to say to you, “So what do you do?” This is what you want, free publicity so to speak. However, how you handle this question could determine whether this person becomes a prospective client, a prospective referral source or just walks away.
This article exposes the 3 mistakes you could be making and why they don’t work. Then you’ll discover the ideal answer and understand why it’s important to use it.
Here are three common answers:
Mistake #1: You say too little.
You say something like, my name is Jane Doe and I’m with _______________________ Real Estate Company. And then you smile hoping the other person will ask you a question. Probably they won’t. This is a mistake because you have made a short statement that doesn’t engage the other person’s attention. It doesn’t invite questioning. The other person may politely say what they do to fill in the awkward silence or they may excuse themselves in some socially graceful way.
Mistake #2: You Say Too Much and Ask for the Business
You say something like, “My name is Jane Doe. I work for ____________________________Real Estate Company and I specialize in country homes. I love the country and I love to show country property. It feels so good to get outdoors, breathe the fresh air and help someone find a home they love in the country. So who do you know who is seeking to buy or sell a country home?”
This is a mistake because you said too much about yourself, did not ask a question that would engage the other person’s attention and its way to early to ask for the business. You should be cultivating a relationship with that person. Remember, people do business with you when they know, like and trust you. With someone you just met, you’re still in the “getting to know each other stage.” The most you should ask for is their business card and give them yours. If you have a connection with that person and would like to contact them in the future, you might consider adding them to your Sphere of Influence and sending them an Item of Value once a month.
Mistake #3: You talk on and on about yourself and your career.
I know this may sound hard to believe but you’d be amazed at the things people say when they are nervous and trying to make small talk. So someone says, “So what do you do?” and you answer, “My name is Jane Doe and I’m with ___________________________ Real Estate Company. I have been with them for 5 years. It’s a great company. All the people there are so friendly and helpful. I am so glad I chose real estate. I love the flexible hours and the income potential. This really beats my corporate job and ….”
This is a mistake because it’s “all about you”. The only things you’re promoting here are (1) The nice atmosphere of your office and (2) what a great career real estate is. If you keep going you might talk the other person into becoming a real estate agent but they won’t be a prospective client or referral source.
So, what should you say?
In my 10 years of specializing in coaching real estate agents in doubling their incomes I have found one amazing answer that does wonders and I’m about to let you in on that secret.
Here’s the scoop. When the other person, asks, “So what do you do?” you need to ask them a question to engage them. The question is, “Well, you know when people are buying or selling a home how nervous and stressed out they can get?” Pause and let the other person respond with a “yes”. Then you say, “Well I take care of all the details and paper work, I hold their hand through the process and make the whole thing a relaxing, enjoyable experience for my client. My name is Jane Doe, and I’m a real estate agent with _______________________company.
Now, what do you think you’d feel or think if you heard that? Most likely you’d want to do business with that person. Why? There are three reasons:
1. They didn’t talk about themselves.
2. They showed that they have a thorough understanding of the issues and problems people face when buying or selling a home.
3. They provided specific solutions to the client’s problems.
When you give this kind of answer there are a lot of benefits. Can you guess what they are? The other person will be genuinely interested because you’ve engaged them. The other person will begin to trust you because you put the client’s needs before your own. Finally, you answered in a unique way and that sets you apart from the crowd. So the next time the person has a real estate question, they are going to call you because you have demonstrated that you care.
With those kind of benefits wouldn’t you want to use this answer, memorize every word and have it roll off your tongue the next time someone says, “So what do you do?” You bet you would. Just watch your income increase.
(For more information on powerful marketing tips and tools, please visit Dr. Maya's web site: www.90daystomoreclients.com while you are there, get your Free Audio mentoring session and Free Report, “7 simple strategies to more clients in 90 days” or call Dr. Maya at 707 799-5412.)