The ‘customer is always right’ approach has received its fair share of criticism since rising to prevalence in the 20th and 21st centuries. While debates can take place about its efficacy within certain working environments, it’s often a narrow outlook considering the myriad factors influencing a business. Behind the customer is an employee, and that person’s training directly affects their outcome with the customer. Shull Homes has recorded success with clients in the real estate sector. But today, its owner Joshua Shull has shed light on the business’ differentiating aspects, from the office to the property.
Conventional real estate businesses often only relate to the purchase and sale of land. However, Shull Homes is partnered with a contracting company, which extends its client relationships to maintenance and customer experience after purchase. Therefore, its training and customer engagement approach is more important than in other real estate brokerages.
A cornerstone of the company’s offering is a client-oriented service combined with solid employee values. In the property sector, businesses commonly fail due to an imbalance weighed heavily on either side. Shull’s company-grown mentality contrasts with the go-it-alone model that is gaining traction in the industry.
“A lot of companies will provide employees with a script they must stick to and a methodology for handling objections and closing a deal,” Shull said. “I don’t want to do that here; I want people to be themselves. All we ask for is a minimized ego and a willingness to adapt to new strategies.”
The revelation of Shull’s staff development model may surprise many in the industry. Typically, real estate agents follow a strict training protocol before leaving their roles to start their own company. But others argue that a long-term employee ethos can lead to a more holistic client service.
“People are coming to us because they need a service, or we are going to them because we have something exciting that we think might benefit them,” Shull explained. “Retaining people proficient in a variety of things allows us to have a service-based sales strategy. It benefits the customer and the employee rather than our bottom line.”
Before forming an agreement with a client, a relationship needs to be built up. For the Shull Homes owner, that aspect of the process is as critical as closing a deal for a particular service. The starting point is that the client is in charge. If the two parties share core values like honesty and transparency, Shull hopes the relationship will turn into a deal.
One of the most surprising aspects of the process described by Shull was his willingness to pick and choose clients that both confine to the relevant legal structures and have authenticity and mutual trust. The admission is noteworthy as the real estate sector is commonly characterized by an eagerness to turn a profit while overlooking the other party’s background.