“We never really get out of the 6th grade. Think about it-we’re all still motivated by the same desires that used to rule the playground: we want to be liked, to be accepted, to get picked for the team, to be popular.”
Gary Burnison-The 5 Graces of Life and Leadership
As I scrolled through my IG and FaceBook feeds at 8pm last night, I wasn’t just sticking to my business plan. I was tapping into a social media cocktail after a long day waiting for that dopamine hit download delivered as someone comments on or “likes” my posts.
We all do it. it is a basic survival mechanism. A wise teacher of mine says that beyond food, shelter and water, the desire to be liked is the second strongest survival drive.
Lately, this drive to be “liked” has been reflected everywhere I look. It has felt like when you buy a red car all of a sudden you notice the gazillion other red cars around? Everyone and everything feels like a big fat mirror reflecting my desire for approval, recognition and to be liked. For someone who professes that she doesn’t care about others’ opinions, I sure outperform myself when it comes to pleasing others!
This brings us to the Tale of Two Sisters…
In the past month, I have had the opportunity to help 2 lovely sisters (one of which is a beloved yoga student of mine) sell homes. They have lived on the same tree-lined street together for over 30 years. Their kids grew up running from one house to another including their mom’s home which was just a few doors down. One of them is moving across the country to be closer to her grandchildren and the other sister is selling their mom’s home after she passed away last year.
There are many similarities between these 2 ladies but there are also many differences. Same with the houses. One house is completely remodeled and the other a fixer. Both are fantastic vintage homes in a highly sought after neighborhood, but they are very different.
The remodeled home went on the market, had a revolving door of visitors and 7 incredible offers within 4 days. Sister #1 was elated, overwhelmed, shocked and called me a “genius.” It is closing for way over list price tomorrow.
The fixer went on the market, had immediate strong traffic but the door wasn’t revolving at the same pace and fetched 2 great offers within 2 days. Sister #2 was happy but underwhelmed saying “I thought there would be more” (offers). Fair enough. Unfortunately, the selected buyer walked away deciding that he didn’t want to do all the work and we are back on the market. The perfect next buyer will come along.
It is true that competition drives prices up. The effectiveness of that dynamic is not to being downplayed here at all.
But what about that deep desire to be liked in this scenario?
Buyers will go way beyond their normal comfort zones; hop on planes and fly across the country in a hot second to see a popular house; write love letters and maximize their budget to be the chosen one. Being chosen feels like a cross between being crowned Miss America and winning The Survivor!
Every time I forward another offer to my Seller with the CONGRATS ON OFFER #….., the dopamine hit is delivered and the effects are cumulative. Feeling like the most popular kid in the 6th grade is a pretty powerful feeling!
What I know and was reminded of was that being liked is overrated. I was always told that if you are so lucky as to have 1 or 2 true friends, treat them like gold because they are worth it. It is the same with real estate. A seller only needs one committed, solid buyer to have an amazing experience. The truth with multiple offers is that of the 7, usually 1 or 2 are outstanding. A buyer is looking for the one right home which can take time.We are all humans doing our human thing. When people ask me what I love most about real estate, my answer is always THE PEOPLE. It is the humanity of it all that keeps me humble, engaged and honored to be a part of it.