Structured meetings are critical. Know what you want to communicate and make your comments count.
Topic – View from the top
Mentor – Malek Younan
- Be up-front
- Never too early – or late – to build your database
- Build relationships based on fact and honesty
Kevin: Our guest all this week has been Malek Younan from Ray White, Gladstone Park in Victoria, was named recently as the top agent in Australia’s initial or inaugural Australia’s Top 100 Residential Real Estate Agents, as nominated by SQM Research. Today I talk to Malek in the final in this series about his seller meetings, but also about how he stays motivated, what he’s seeing as the big changes in the industry and where the industry’s headed in the future.
Being an auction office, auction-driven office, no doubt you’ve got your procedure. You mentioned that. You’ve got a system that you work to, and no doubt part of that are your seller meetings. These are meetings during that process. Tell me about those. How structured are those meetings once you get underway with the campaign?
Malek: Yes, yes. Look, we’re very strict on that, and I think Ray White Corporate, overall, is very strict on that, which has really implemented that even more in our business. But I did this from 10, 12 years ago regardless. It was automatically. Again, its a people-to-people business, it’s connection, it’s just about sitting down, having a chat, this is what it is, guys.
If I sit down with you one-on-one a week, some people say, “Malek, I’m too busy. Just call me.” “So, how many times do you want me to call you?” “Oh, look, twice a week is fine, once a week is fine, Malek.” Some people say, “Malek, you know what, I’m busy.” I deal with CEOs, I deal with corporate people, I deal with people that are in Dubai, and say, “Malek, just ring me, send me an email, just tell me the facts,” but ring them, call them, sit down with them, deliver what you’ve promised, tell them the truth and 95% of those clients, they will take that on board and it will be a positive ending.
Kevin: Just on that point, I’d be keen to get your take on this too, and that is, sometimes when you tell someone the truth that maybe they don’t want to hear, and you tell them verbally, in one ear and out the other. However, if you put it in writing after that conversation that you confirm it, it has a lot more meaning.
Malek: Absolutely. Look, I think writing is fantastic. Whether it’s a vendor report or an email, it really hits home, because when you finish up with a client, or you talk to them, or you’ll call them, when you leave [inaudible 00:02:19], they read your email, they sit down with their wife and go, “You know what? Wow, we’ve had, for example, 29 people through. 11 people are telling me this is what it’s worth. While we’re X amount away, we need to be more realistic, we need to adjust it. We’re here to sell, we need to adjust.”
Whereas if you tell someone that, if you tell them, “Look, guys, this is what they’re talking [inaudible 00:02:39],” “Oh, yeah, no problem. I want more.” But if they actually see it in writing, they actually take it all in, they will give you a much more realistic reserve once it comes down to the business end of the side, of the end of the meeting, yeah. So very important. Very important.
Kevin: Malek, can we just round this interview out, and it’s been delightful talking to you, man. I knew it would be fantastic.
Malek: Thank you.
Kevin: But tell me about how you stay motivated, ’cause you’re obviously very, very motivated. Is it family, is it your love of the business? What is it?
Malek: Okay, so my why, they call it, my why for this career that I’ve chosen, family is obviously number one.
Let me tell you this. What other job can you have an uncut wage or income where you deal with different people on a daily basis, you’re not stuck in a office, you can write your own paycheck by how passionate you are? What other job does that where you don’t even need a five, six-year uni degree and make six digits? Some of my good, good, I guess, real estate friends are making seven digits. Which other game allows you to do that? I don’t know of one, so it’s rewarding.
If you’re passionate and you can write your own paycheck and you’ve got no limit to what you can do … And that’s what I believe in life. I don’t like to give myself any limits. It’s break boundaries, do something different. Yeah, make mistakes. It’s great. But do what you love and the money is a side effect.
I’ll tell you one thing, do not chase the money. Chase the passion, chase the dream. I got into electrical engineering and I just didn’t want that. I’m not passionate about it. I didn’t mind maths. I like it, I like physics, but it didn’t drive me anywhere. This game did on a two-week course, which I loved, and look where it’s got me, and I love it.
In order to get onto this platform, I’ve been contacted by another few interstate companies, motivational speaking companies, [inaudible 00:04:55] to be speakers. I’m really, really proud and humbled, and a lot of gratitude in order to give back as well. So, this industry is a whole thing wrapped up beautifully.
Kevin: Now you’ve been in the industry 16 years, you’ve seen a lot of change, you’ve gone through from property management into sales and now business ownership. Tell me about the big changes that you’ve noticed in the industry over the last 16 years. What are the things that have changed how we do business?
Malek: Oh, wow. From what I started I had a notepad. You know the ones, the A-Z clients. I had to put them there and I made notes on them. Now it’s technology, social media, videos, marketing. You need to be super sharp. You need to be on top of all technology. You need to be on top of all social media, your demographic changing. We’re dealing with a lot of younger … Our demographic’s between 25 and 45 year olds. Everyone’s different. Everywhere is different. If you go to rural, it’ll probably be different. [inaudible 00:06:01] area, you need to be up with the times. But you know what doesn’t change, Kevin?
Kevin: What’s that?
Malek: It’s a people’s business. Connection. Be real. Sit down with them, spend an extra 15 minutes. Don’t be rushing off to another appointment or you’ve got to do something else. Give that time back. Give back to the community.
A lot of people now, they’re too busy to give back, they’re too busy because they want to make more money. I’m telling you, be passionate, give back, and the money is a side effect. It will come. And it’s proven in the last seven months in our business, and I’m glad that myself and Philip, my business partner, are on the same [inaudible 00:06:38].
A lot of clients go out there, I’ve seen the businesses open, like you said, Kevin, and then shut down. They’re all about the money. We’re not. We’re young, we’re enthusiastic, we’re driven, we’re giving back to the community and people love us. They come in. “Do you have a moment? Just have a coffee with us, just have a chat,” you know? “I saw your car outside, Malek.” I’ve got personal plates. “I just want to have a chat with you.” “Mate, no worries. Come in. Just give me five minutes. I’ll wrap up this call. I’m going to sit down with you.” All customer service.
Now, if you’re not like that at customer service, you need to make a client walk out of your office to feel good and feel great so they can recommend you to another 10 people, and then at the same time you’ll stop marketing. You’ll get to a point where you’ll be like, well, it’s all shared by people.
Kevin: Malek, think back. Think back to when you first started in real estate. Is there something that you’ve learned in that 16-year journey that you wished someone had told you back then?
Malek: Ha, what someone told me back then. What they-
Malek: … should’ve have told-
Kevin: No, do you wish they-
Malek: [crosstalk 00:07:42]
Kevin: … had told you. Do you wish-
Kevin: … they had told you.
Malek: Yes. One thing. Database.
Kevin: Ah, yeah,
Malek: When I started no one said set up a database. No one said make notes on every home you’ve sold, write them down. Back then, 16 years ago, there wasn’t this computerised thing, there wasn’t all this desktop we use, there wasn’t all this CRMs that we use now. If I had of done that … I’ve been doing that maybe the last five, six years, but if I’d done that from 16 years ago, I probably would’ve had a staff of 15 right now, not seven.
But, again, you live and learn. If I didn’t pick up on those things and learnt better, I couldn’t have bettered myself. But whoever’s starting up in a business, database and follow through with that database. Clean out your database. Do not deal with the people that you don’t want to deal with.
If people are bringing you down, no one wants to deal with idiots. I’m telling you now. You want to get into work and deal with people that are on your level, make magic happen, and just kick arse. And just attitude. Just be positive and just drive through all this negativity that every other agent’s telling you. That’s what I can tell.
Kevin: Yeah, CRMs’ interesting, isn’t it? It’s never too late to start. But when you start, start simply and don’t try and get it all perfect to start with, otherwise you’ll never get underway with it.
Malek: Nah, nah. Look, just put your input-
Kevin: Just do it.
Malek: … in there. Just do it. Just put your data in there, and all I say, every six to 12 months, update your data. Clean your data out. You’re dealing with a lot of people. People sometimes say to me, “Oh, how big is your database?” And to be honest, I have maybe around 2,000, and now I talk to continuously maybe 500 a year. That will bring me more clear crisp vision.
Because unless you’re a bloody machine, like James Tostevin … He’s a absolute machine, which I think he does 200 calls a day, I’ve heard. If you want to keep it simple, deal with what you can handle and keep a very good customer service level, but database is the key. Is the key. People look for other business, new business. They don’t look at their old business that they’ve done all those years.
Kevin: Malek, last question. Your view of where the industry’s headed. What do you think it’s going to be like in a decade from now?
Malek: What’s going to happen decade from now? Mate, if I knew that, I’ll be retiring too. But I guess I don’t believe personal contact will change. I don’t think that will change. What will change, I think, is it’s going to be, I think, more cutting edge. You need to be keeping up with the times. It’s going to be more fast-paced. But remember, with your clientele, don’t be rushed with them. That will not change. People always want your time, but it will be more cutthroat.
I was [inaudible 00:10:44] with [inaudible 00:10:44] a guy around six months ago, and it’s going to come in the next 12 months or, I think, 24 months where you do [inaudible 00:10:51] inspections visually. They come into your office, [inaudible 00:10:54] have be so short for time you’ll walk through homes with a … It’s like a video enhancer, and it’s a visual view of the home.
Kevin: Virtual reality.
Malek: Virtual reality. Spot on. That’s coming in time very soon, and that’s in the next 12 months, 24 months, let alone what’s going to happen in a decade. To be honest, I cannot answer it clearly or I’ll be misleading you.
Kevin: No, no, I think you’re spot on, and I think technology’s going to drive us so far, but we should never, ever be removed from that one-on-one relationship. I think that’s going to be the key is actually building relationships. Everything you and I have talked about is all-
Malek: Yeah, [crosstalk 00:11:35]
Kevin: … about relationships.
Malek: It’s all about connecting. I’ll tell you this, any relationship in life. If you have a pet, if you have a wife, if you have a girlfriend, if you have a business partner, whatever you do, if communication is the not the key, a seller is exactly the same. If you don’t connect, it will be divided, you will lose that client, you’ll lose that partner, you’ll lose that wife.
You need to put your time into it. No matter how busy you get in life, you need to have that communication and that connection. You lose that, then forget it. You won’t have anything, like any relationship. And just be real, guys. Be real.
Kevin: Malek, it’s been a privilege talking to you. Congratulations.
Malek: Thank you.
Kevin: I wish you-
Malek: Appreciate it.
Kevin: … every success. No doubt we’re going to hear a lot more about you. We’ll probably see you on stage somewhere.
Malek: Nah, definitely. And one thing that I’m starting in my area, Ray White, Gladstone Park. Come and see us and we’d love to help you out.
Kevin: Good. Well, have a cup of coffee there where you are now.
Malek: Absolutely. I’ll enjoy one. Thank you, Kevin. I appreciate it-
Kevin: Good on you.
Malek: … [crosstalk 00:12:34]
Kevin: Thanks, Malek. Thank you.
Kevin: Watch out for the extended unedited video with Malek. That’ll be coming out in the next week or so.
My guest has been Malek Younan. Congratulations to him. He’s from Ray White, Gladstone Park in Victoria, taking out the top spot in the inaugural list of Australia’s Top 100 Residential Real Estate Agents, as nominated by SQM Research.