Linda Simmons from Barfoot & Thompson is one of our New Zealand Changed Agents Award 2018 finalists. She describes how a near death experience has given her a new perspective on life and better work/life balance.
Linda Simmons and her husband have both been close to death, which has given them a new appreciation of every day.
"Mine was illness related and my husband's accident related. It has made us very conscious of not taking life for granted. Sometimes the real estate world can feel like it is demanding," Mrs Simmons said.
The biggest struggle in her real estate career is something most agents know all too well.
"It is the seemingly never-ending challenge of achieving that elusive "life balance". I feel like I walk a constant path of holding back on growing my business; if I get even busier, the rest of my life begins to suffer."
Before entering the property world, Mrs Simmons spent 20 years working on global marketing campaigns with the company, Nestle.
She believes the skills she developed in this role are what have made her stand-out and win awards. "When I look back the thing that I have been most excited about was in my very first year in real estate when I was awarded runner up for the REINZ Best Multi-Media Marketing Campaign for the very first listing campaign that I ran!"
Mrs Simmons said she integrated a different approach to the winning campaign. "I used emotion to engage buyers. Funnily enough, the family who bought the property had no intention of buying a home but were attracted by the marketing," she said.
However, Josh Phegan taught her not to rely solely on her marketing background.
"It gives me a strong point of difference and that's great, but it doesn't necessarily make my client's experience a better one in terms of how they feel as they go through the journey of selling their home," she said.
Mrs Simmons said Josh's training helped her to focus on reducing stress for everyone involved to make the journey of selling a home an enjoyable experience.
Her mantra is "to add value to clients every step of the way". "I start from a base of understanding their needs and then working out how best to meet their needs and I then offer a tailored service to make sure all their needs are met.
I then go out of my way to understand what is unique about a home before I market it, with the ultimate goal of getting the highest price possible," said Mrs Simmons.
By implementing this change, she said she gets more referrals, higher value properties and less people wanting discount fees.
"In simple terms, the way that we help our clients through the journey of selling their homes means our clients are not only happy because they sell their homes, they actually enjoy the experience and they become raving fans!" she said.