Re: Dressing/Acting the part - Posted by B.L.Renfrow
Posted by B.L.Renfrow on June 22, 1999 at 12:59:07:
I have been in the medical profession for a number of years. Some time ago, there was a now-classic study published in which the investigators showed emergency department patients pictures of the same health care providers, but dressed differently in each photo. In some, they were wearing a dress shirt, tie and white lab coat (all the photos were of men). In another set, they wore a casual shirt and jeans, and in the third, they wore hospital scrubs and a lab coat. The patients were asked to indicate which providers look “most competent.” Overwhelmingly, they consistently picked the ones in tie and lab coat.
I think the findings apply here as well. (No, I don’t wear a lab coat when I meet with sellers!) But we’re holding ourselves out to strangers as professionals whom they should trust with probably the largest asset they’ve ever owned. And we certainly want to look successful, even if we’ve yet to complete a deal. Image DOES count! If you drive up in a dented, dirty 1982 Rustmobile, it sure doesn’t present an image of a successful investor, even though you may have the GNP of Saudi Arabia in your bank account.
I think it’s a matter of circumstances too. If I’m meeting with the seller of a $100K house, you can bet I’m going to show up in a tie and jacket. However, if it’s an inexpensive property in a less-desirable area, I’ll just wear a shirt and slacks. Heck, I haven’t done any MH deals, but if I’d walked into some of them around here in a suit, I’d probably be dodging buckshot!
I just finished a very interesting book by Tom Hopkins on selling real estate. It’s directed toward the RE agent, but I picked up tons of useful information on the many aspects of interacting with buyers and sellers, and he devotes a whole chapter to exactly this issue. (Can’t recall the title right now, but I can look if anyone’s interested.)
So, no, it’s not a silly question at all.