Two-Step Strategy for Delivering Bad News

08 January 2019

By Phil Hollander

real estate agent scriptsAs real estate agents, it is simply impossible for everything to go perfectly, all of the time.

Even the most successful and experienced real estate agents have been faced with the unfortunate task of having to deliver the occasional piece of bad news to a client.

You may have to let them know, “The offer fell through,” or, “Attendance at the open house was not great,” or, “We’ll need to drop the price.”

Regardless of what the bad news is, it’s never easy to deliver. That’s why we’re offering a simple two-step strategy that may help:

Step 1: Tell it like it is.

Don’t beat around the bush or sugarcoat anything, and definitely do not drag it out. Think about the last time you knew someone was about to tell you something that you didn’t want to hear. You likely sensed that you were about to hear some bad news. If you really think about it, the anticipation or lead up to the news probably felt a lot worse than actually receiving the news. So break the news to your clients as simply, quickly and clearly as possible.

Step 2: Put the bad news in the right perspective.

As bad as the news might be, it is probably not as devastating as you or your clients initially think. For example, attendance might have been miniscule at an open house, but that doesn’t mean the property isn’t going to sell. Remind the client that it’s a minor setback, not a major catastrophe.

This two-step strategy will not only make bad news easier for you to deliver, it also makes that news less worrisome and difficult for the client to hear.

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