by Bob Scarff

I had an interesting conversation just before the Christmas break with a very good friend of mine who is the MD of an independent estate agent in the south of England. I was talking to him about some of the “New for 2018” features of Callwell. The most exciting of which is Callwell Score.

Callwell Score gives our Estate Agent customers the ability to encourage their branch staff to compete with each other to give the best Customer service through the use of live, real time league tables on every employee’s Callwell Dashboard.

I think it’s the coolest thing we’ve done so far, but he wasn’t so sure.

I’m better at it than you

I’ve always seen that there is a competitive spirit within every sales person, certainly there is within every successful Estate Agent. Show them a league table and they’ll want to be at the top of it. Doesn’t matter what it’s for. Doesn’t matter if there’s a prize. “I believe that I’m better at my job than anyone around me and this is another opportunity for me to prove it” - they say.

Just like enthusiasm - I’m yet to meet a successful unenthusiastic Estate Agent. I remember many years ago berating (in a constructive and consultative manner of course) a young sales negotiator for his lack of enthusiasm and how it was likely to cause the end of his career with me (as it later did) to which he uttered the immortal line “I am enthusiastic, I just don’t show it”.

Anyway, back to my main point, Competitive Spirit. There’s an inner determination to succeed inside every estate agent, always has been, always will be…….or is there? My MD friend got me wondering if this has also changed, just like Ties, Tattoos and Beards. People dress differently, does that mean they act differently? Is the “modern” sales person still motivated in that same way? I get the fact that “millennials” view the work place differently from when I was the age that they are now, but are we really saying that competitive edge has disappeared?

I think not

I meet Estate Agents up and down the UK every week. All shapes and sizes, all types and ages. I still see in their eyes that steely determination to be the best. That determination to be better at what they do than the woman or man at the next desk.

I will concede though that one important thing has changed, and maybe this was what my friend was getting at. It’s this……in years past the only thing that mattered was the sale itself…..the money. Whereas now (and the world is a better place for it) the way in which you’ve gone about achieving the sale is just as important. Customer Service matters in a way that it never has before.

That’s why I think that Callwell Score is the coolest things we’ve done so far. It uses good old fashioned Competitive Spirit to drive all important new fashioned Customer Service. It’s really good for Callwell’s customers, but it’s brilliant for their customers.

PS: Tuesday this week was the fortieth anniversary of me starting work as an estate agent. If you worked with me during this time then you might be able to identify the unenthusiastic young negotiator - you might even think it’s you - drop me an email with who you think it might be……

Bob Scarff

Written by
Bob Scarff

Bob Scarff ran the UK’s largest and most successful firm of estate agents, having worked his way up from a trainee negotiator in 1978. Now bringing his passion for customer service and organisational discipline to other companies and sectors, he saw quickly the benefits that Callwell can provide and co-founded PropTech Solutions in 2016 to relaunch it into the market.


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Graeme MacLeod

18 Jan 2018 09:07:09

Competitiveness alive and well up here in the North – Cumberland Estate Agents go live with Callwell today – can’t wait to see how we compare..

Chris Mobbs

18 Jan 2018 18:01:09

I am glad it was not me Bob!

Maybe should have said ‘one of the coolest’ or it ‘is the coolest thing’. Sorry canot help at as your articles are always a great read even after a manic day, thanks for them!

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