Sarah Bell: Welcome back to the AREC couch. Now, interesting interview this morning. I’d like to introduce to you James Bell who is one of Australia’s most experienced and best real estate agents. If not, certainly the most handsome.
James Bell: Too kind.
Sarah: We often have conversations about how the industry has changed and how everything got quite complicated and maybe distracted from the basics. I think what’s come out of a lot of the speakers yesterday was just a need to return to the basics. What are your thoughts on that?
James: 100%. I’ve even noticed it coming back and getting my hands on the tools again in our office, where it really took me that two to three months to get things up and running and started again. It’s really true when you say the opportunities you’re getting now are a reflection of the work you put in two to three months earlier.
For me, I really hit my database, the phones, door knocking at the start of this year. The fruits of those labour are really starting to come through over the past month or two.
Sarah: Database is big for you, isn’t it?
James: Huge for me, and the structure of the database as well.
Sarah: James, tell me about your why.
James: Well, for me, real estate’s always been a lifestyle. I love and I enjoy what I do. I love the auctioneering, I love listing properties. For me, the thrill of it all backs up the lifestyle that, as you know being my wonderful wife, that we want to obviously provide opportunity for our children, provide them the best as I know my parents certainly did for me.
Sarah: We talked a bit yesterday as well about having a value-based organisation and having a value-based business. What do you think are those values that started with your Dad and that is still present today?
James: I think sometimes we get lost in our industry. Sometimes we have to remind each other as a team and as an industry that we are in a service based industry. That gets lost in all this technology advancement that we’ve had over the last, probably, five years.
It seems every time you turn around, there’s a new product out there. It simply doesn’t replace the service that we offer our clients, consumers, buyers, sellers, and tenants, for that matter, as well.
Sarah: What’s the focus that you’re taking away from AREC?
James: There was a section yesterday that I noticed a bit of a theme is, what are your values as individuals, and your standards, and what are you not going to negotiate on in your business life? It is a business whether you’re an individual salesperson or the owner of an organisation. It really is a business that you’re running.
I think imploring the team to set their standards and be a support for them to do so, not actually say, “This is what I would do, so you have to do it,” but working with them to figure out what their standards are and values.
Sarah: James, thank you for joining us on the AREC couch.