How to bounce back from a missed listing

Spend 5% of your time on the problem (I missed out) and 95% of your time on the solution (what am I going to do differently next time).

How to bounce back from a missed listing
Photo by Debby Hudson / Unsplash

"Don't speak... I know just what you're thinking..."
- Me, when an owner calls to say they've chosen another agent.

The emotional roller-coaster of real estate sales...

There was a point in my career where I went on an impressive run of missing out on listings.

I looked online one day and counted up 11 properties that were on the market with other agents that I had either directly interviewed for, or had at least known about before they were listed.

I had lost every single one to another salesperson.

Then, I did the worst thing ever: I calculated the gross commission I had likely missed out on by not getting those listings.

At that point, I swore profusely, hung my head in shame and stared at the ground for a very long time.

How did it happen?

The short answer is, I got complacent.

  • I started doing one-stop listing presentations instead of two.
  • I started presenting to one owner instead of insisting on all owners being available.
  • My advice was always honest but sometimes delivered without laying the appropriate groundwork, meaning the owners might not have been ready to hear it.
  • I gave owners lists of things to do to get ready to sell before truly understanding the capacity of the owners to handle those steps.
  • I didn't follow up on opportunities (lack of phone calls after appraisals).
  • I stopped dropping off pre-listing kits before the first meeting.
  • My appraisal reports were slow to be processed and delivered.

At the time, I was fortunate. I had many other listings to keep me occupied. Other owners who had chosen me. The obligation to do a good job meant I couldn't dwell on my loss for long. I simply had to dust myself off and carry on.

But for many agents, each listing opportunity is make or break. Miss out 2 or 3 times in a row and you might not be able to pay your bills next month.

Miss out on 5 or 10 listings and you might not be in real estate much longer.

I want to share with you how I bounced back from this period, and from every other listing let-down in my career. Because in real estate, we all miss out on listings. And our success in property is largely influenced by how we respond to our losses, not our wins.