The article below, about the late Burke Team Leader Vicki Nellis, appeared on Mainstreet this week.
By Amanda Okker, RE/MAX Times Online Editor
The final network award that will have Vicki Nellis’ name on it was accepted by her son, Sales Associate James Nellis II, at RE/MAX R4 in Las Vegas last month. In a final triumphant push against the brain cancer that eventually claimed her life Dec. 29, 2010, Vicki led her team to the No. 9 spot on the list of Top 10 RE/MAX Teams in the United States.
Vicki, a Sales Associate with RE/MAX Allegiance in Burke, Va., reached the Circle of Legends during her career of 29 years and earned her way into the top RE/MAX production clubs year after year. In 2010, she earned the Diamond Award. Her kindness and professionalism will be greatly missed in the RE/MAX Network.
“When I was young and my mother first started in real estate, my father said that she was responsible for earning enough money each month to pay the grocery bill, and it freaked her out,” says James, who now leads the Nellis Group at RE/MAX Allegiance. “It’s amazing to see how God blessed her business, helping her turn it into a multimillion dollar company.”
Vicki received 85 percent of her business from referrals. James shares these career and team tips on her behalf. Watch one of Vicki’s final video updates on YouTube.
Clients come first
Vicki taught all of her agents to put themselves in the shoes of their clients. It wasn’t unusual for Vicki to suggest it might not be the right time for someone to buy or sell. Don’t forget that you’re serving others first and yourself second.
Negotiate to win
Always give the other party options, but only those your clients truly want. Vicki didn’t treat negotiations in a transaction like a bull in china shop; she stayed calm. Prior to speaking with the other party, she would establish multiple options that were all acceptable to her client. Then, rather than demanding one option, Vicki would give the other party multiple options in order to reach a compromise that everyone could feel good about.
Set the right expectations
So many clients have said Vicki was the calming presence during a very stressful time. They always knew she would take care of them and had the right answers. Setting expectations is critical to a smooth process for buyers and sellers. This was always accomplished during initial consultations that could last one to two hours.
Be there every day
Vicki put the right people in the right positions on her team. She hired staff members who became an extension of the care she provided herself. And she hired agents who put the client’s needs first. Delegation was important to the success of Vicki’s business, but she was actively involved every day.
Think about the ways you can incorporate good will into your business. Vicki regularly involved her clients or a charity in parties she hosted. In the last years of her life, she was dedicated to supporting the organization Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure. This year, the Nellis family will be running the Marine Corps Marathon in Vicki’s honor and to raise money for the brain cancer research. Learn more about their efforts.
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