My first Broker, the Del Webb Corporation, was big on fast failure. The principle and skill of what I now call Terminatio Simulatio Velociter was drilled into the head of each fledgling Sales Counselor whose job it was to meet, greet and qualify prospects who visited the Sales Pavilion in Sun City West.
Now, some nearly 25 years hence, I truly do recognize the importance of “sorting” and the notion of elimination has become more and more a part of representing my commercial real estate clients effectively.
Of late, and driven by market conditions, there has emerged a new brand of bottom-feeding. It’s a concept I call “LOI Shopping” or, maybe “Networking the Deal” for better terms.
There is no doubt in my mind that this carp-like behavior among prospective tenants is a product of too much inventory and the desire of often marginal tenants to continue their vain attempts to shrink or even collapse the pricing envelope.
Mind you, there is no orchestrated conspiracy here; just a glut of inventory and an every expanding population of weak tenants who think if they shake the tree hard enough fruit will fall to the ground.
Well, I am mad as hell and not going to take it anymore! I am implementing new measures to expose and terminate the pretenders…these fakes and would be tenant hypocrites who are representing themselves to my clients as so much more than they really are.
Although I am not ready to strap on a six shooter like Richard Boone did in “Have Gun Will Travel,” and ride into some western town on a mission of settling scores, I am ready for a serious revision of my qualifying language and the way I handle the “wanna be” candidate.
Since we are using some Latin, let me throw in some Greek too. The work “hypocrite” is derived from the Greek noun “υποκριτής” meaning “one who wears two masks.” It’s the source of the theater icon that depicts “comedy and tragedy.”
I am ready to pull back a few masks and find out what is behind them. I’m ready for a lot less comedy, especially since no one is laughing. Then too, I am not especially fond of the tragedy angle either.
Masks don’t work well in the empirical world of commercial real estate. Masks are only suitable for the stage, where the emotions of an audience are supposed to be toyed with.
I’m going back to what Del Webb taught me as a highly skilled Sales Counselor…the principle of Terminatio Simulatio Velociter or, in plain English, TERMINATE THE PRETENDER QUICKLY.
You see, guys like Del Webb understood clearly the principled approach to professional representation. There are only two types of real estate investors or, in the case of Del E. Webb, home buyers; the ones that will and the ones that won’t…the ones that can and the ones that can’t…the ones that do and the ones that don’t.
Those that will are those than can and those that can are those that do. No mask, no pretense.
To the Webb organization, the deliberately implemented sorting process begins at the first business encounter (give name, get name, use name) and continues as an integral component of all the follows, culminating in securing loyalty, examination, agreement and execution.
For the foreseeable future, the market is going to continue to hammer us all, owners, tenants and brokers. Too many properties, too little time and too few truly qualified tenants and investors.
I’m going back to the principle of Terminatio Simulatio Velociter or, in plain English, TERMINATE THE PRETENDER QUICKLY.
Donald Teel is a Senior Associate with Arizona Commercial, an Arizona commercial brokerage and property management firm. Need more information? Please call (928) 777-8100 or, if you prefer, you may email Donald Teel