Lindsay Grandquest, REALTOR® at Better Homes and Gardens® Generations, fresh off her latest Agent Award Winner successes, answers ten questions with Clean Slate, showing how great follow-up can help build your customer relationships, how excellence in service can help build your business, and how helping others can help build your life.
Which of our BHGRE® P.A.I.G.E. (Passion, Authenticity, Innovation, Growth, Excellence) core values do you identify with most, and why?
I identify with excellence more than any other core value of BHGRE. In my business practices, I strive daily to deliver a service to a buyer or seller client that is exceptional and unlike any other agent in our marketplace. Purchasing or selling a home is the most powerful and emotional process in a person’s life. It is usually the largest investment that anyone will ever make.
Performing at a high level of excellence will always please the party that you are serving and it is the launch pad into asking for referrals. As an agent, we should all get at least two or three referrals from each buyer or seller that we help. I believe that if you deliver on a promise and perform with excellence in mind, an agent is bound to be successful.
What are your favorite qualities in a customer?
My favorite qualities in a customer are their willingness to learn and research on their own. Most agents dread the idea that buyers and sellers can find information so easily via the web. I tend to like that a customer I serve can do some groundwork and be somewhat knowledgeable about the real estate process. This knowledge allows for the customer to come to you with only the important and probing questions that really affect the buy or sell that you are facilitating.
What is the one characteristic that’s helped you the most in your career?
The characteristic that has helped me the most in my career is my persistence and follow-up with buyers and sellers. So often, agents will have the opportunity to meet a valuable, willing and able buyer or seller. We, as agents, come across so many opportunities that carry potential, but we have horrible follow-up. I stay in constant communication with anyone that I think will turn into a transaction. I believe that everyone has something to offer or everyone knows someone else who is looking to buy or sell a home. If all agents would grasp the concept that every person we come in contact with is an opportunity for us to deliver an exceptional real estate service, I think the perception of the real estate agent to the world would be viewed as a huge asset in a transaction.
What was the last book you read?
I constantly read and reread Raving Fans, by Ken Blanchard. This is a quick and easy book that always reminds me of the business that I want to build. The concept of the book is that the goal to being a successful agent is to capitalize on the relationships that we have and turn our friends and families into “Raving Fans” who always recruit and promote buyers and sellers to call us first in an effort to service them. This technique has worked wonders for me and my business model.
If you were not in real estate, what would you be doing?
If I didn’t sell real estate, I would definitely still be an entrepreneur. The beauty of being an agent is that I do not have a boss, I don’t have anyone asking me to clock in and out, nor do I have anyone telling me when I can take a vacation. The freedom with a real estate career is like none other, as long as an agent is disciplined enough to work hard when they are actively in work mode. I love being my own boss and knowing that no one else calculates my paycheck – my paycheck is only calculated by the effort and work that I put into selling.
What was the last song you heard that you couldn’t stop humming?
The last song that I heard and I can’t stop humming is this new Taylor Swift, “Shake It Off” song. She is so young and vibrant and happy all the time. It is always refreshing to be able to turn on the radio and close my eyes and feel like I am Taylor Swift, myself! Now…shake, shake, shake it off!
Who is your real-life hero?
As cliché as it sounds, my mother is my real-life hero. She is a single mother who raised three girls all on her own. She is the epitome of a strong and independent woman. She is a top producer in sales herself – she is a make-up artist. At an early age, she instilled in me that I needed to also become independent and work as hard as I could for the things in life that I wanted. She taught me that I only get out of life what I put into it. She saw me through school and sent me off to college and told me constantly how important it was to do well and give my best to anything and everything that I touched. She is the reason for my success, but more importantly, she is my motivation to be half the woman that she is.
What is your favorite motto?
My favorite motto is a quote of Zig Ziglar’s that says, “You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help enough other people get what they want.” This is just beautiful to me. I have always had a servant’s heart and I have always been willing to serve and help at any given opportunity. I always try to help out the new agents in the office. I remember when I was new and how important and nice it was when other seasoned agents reached out a helping hand to me. I am very grateful to anyone that believed enough in me to stop during their busy day to answer a question for me. Now, I try to return that same respect. I am willing to put any agent in the car with me and allow them to soak in any showing etiquette or techniques that I use throughout my process. I believe if you give to others, you will be blessed in return. Thanks, Zig Ziglar!
If you could sell a home in any market in the world, where would it be?
Eeek! What a hard question. I would probably sell in Hollywood – but only if I knew that I would be super, super successful and work with celebrities! I would wow those celebrities and I would beg them to be my friends so that I could post pictures with them on Facebook and everyone I know in little-bitty Mobile, Alabama, would be so jelly!
What advice would you give your younger self starting out in real estate?
The advice that I would give my younger self starting out in real estate is to always believe in myself and the power that I possess. It is crazy to think about the trust that buyers and sellers put into their agents! The customer will literally look at us and assume that we will handle them as if we were dealing with a family member. When the customer puts that much trust into us, we, as agents, should always deliver to them an experience that is above average. Customers look to agents for guidance and information – the power is in our hands at this point. We have the chance to make a buyer’s dreams a reality and a seller move onto different goals that they have in this life.
What an amazing feeling that I can be a part of a life-changing event for another individual.