The Art of the Positive

Editor’s Note: This article first appeared in the December, 1973 issue of The Real Estate News Observer.

Over a period of time and after attending 100 plus exchange meetings, each commercial and investment broker develops his or her own technique of operation. These may vary depending on each person’s portfolio of clients and/or properties, but there are some general unwritten techniques that a large percentage follow, that merit exploration.


Following are 10 simple little techniques that may add to your production:

1. Always try to locate your seat at an exchange meeting, so you are between two people who are producers. Many transactions generated at a meeting are from indirect sources (Not presented from podium). If you arrange yourself between two producers you are opening yourself to a positive situation. Notice also that we said “between” – if “indirect” source.

2. As a meeting progresses, you will find a need to use the phone personally to discuss a situation with another broker, etc. All of these situations require that you leave the meeting room. We suggest that you do not leave the room when:

  • Another broker is presenting a package which he owns himself or has a controlling interest. Here you have a situation where there should be knowledge and good control. Your chances of success are higher.
  • When the broker presenting the package is someone with whom you have closed previous transactions. There seems to be a small invisible barrier between brokers until they have closed transactions together. Once this has happened you will find it easier to close and your chances are better with these particular brokers.
  • When a need for a third property is presented in a multiple exchange. Here you have momentum, motivation, etc. and your chances of closing are very good.

3. As we explained in #2 above, there are certain things that can be better accomplished outside of the meeting room, and yet you do not want to miss important opportunity at the general meeting.

  • When the broker is presenting an apartment with a 25% expense factor; or a motel @ 8 times gross. It is obvious he has not done his homework. Chances of success are minimal. It’s a good time to leave.
  • When someone is presenting a $5,000 or $10,000 house equity… why waste your time.

4. It is necessary to get exposure for packages you will not have an opportunity to present at this meeting. We suggest that you:

  • Give a complete set of these to the people on both sides of you and across the table from you.

5. Our normal procedure is to write a mini-form offer. Which we often just write (as a thought) and forget. If you are very serious about your proposal be sure to write a long form. It adds emphasis to your proposal.

6. During the coffee breaks and at other recess periods be sure to meet any and all brokers you do not know. Particularly meet those from other areas. With each of these contacts, your own horizons grow.

7. Participate and think during the brainstorming sessions. Also put in your time and effort as moderator or officer, etc. in your own groups. Become involved.

8. On a transaction of major consequence, meet with the other broker and brainstorm your proposal before you write it.

9. Encourage all offers – Learn to brainstorm properly and never kill a proposal – be positive.

10. Exchanging is an art, not a science and it is the Art of the Positive. You will never meet a successful exchangor who is a negative person.

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