F-O-R-D stands for FAMILY / OCCUPATION / RECREATION / DREAMS. It’s simply a memory jogger to remind you to ask questions in those 4 categories, in order to create conversation. This way you can connect in a meaningful way.
Remember :“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Maya Angelou
When do you use this?
- When you’re meeting new people at a Center of Influence meeting / event / party / club / etc. Holiday events are a perfect place to practice this.
- When you are meeting someone new one-on-one, such as a hairdresser, neighbor, friend-of-a-friend, etc.
- When you’re reaching out by phone or in person to anyone in yourPast Client / Sphere of Influence database. This is great for breaking the ice and to stop being weird about calling people.
Why does it work?
1 Using the F-O-R-D pattern instantly removes your ego by making the conversation about the other person. It lends versatility to all of the 4 personality styles.
2 Using the F-O-R-D pattern requires that you ask questions. Questions allow you to control the conversation. This is the same reason all scripts that are written in question format are your friend!
3 Creating conversation where the other party is speaking about themselves automatically makes them feel special, important and paid attention to. Just as the Maya Angelou quote states. Making them feel good will make them remember you. They must remember you as a good person first, a trusted real estate advisor second.
4 Using the ‘O’ in the F-O-R-D conversation pattern creates the situation where the other party is asking you ‘how’s real estate’, or ‘what is it that you do for a living?’…For most agents, it’s far more comfortable bringing up real estate when someone asks, versus just coming out with a ‘when do you plan on moving’ type of ‘script’.
Let’s hear some examples of how this works…
Family Questions (the Ice-Breaker)
If you know their family:
“How are (insert kid’s names)?”
“How are (insert pets names)?’
“Have you always lived here or did you move from somewhere else?”
“How were your holidays? What was the best thing your family did this year?”
(If you know where they work / what they do)
“How are things over at ABC Corporation?”
“Is your company still loving the relocation to (insert city)?”
“What’s new at ABC Corporation?”
“Are you still working at ABC Corporation? How do you like it there?”
Secret: Notice there are no ‘yes or no’ questions! Yes of no answers kill conversation and create a sense of awkwardness.
Secret: Expect a ‘reciprocal question’ when you ask about their job. This is what you’re looking for!!! Ultimately, THIS is the gold hidden in the F-O-R-D pattern!
When they ask ‘How’s real estate?’, always be positive!!! They may also ask ‘what is it you do for a living?’ (depending if they know you well or not).
“Real estate is great! I’ve been very blessed to be able to help so many people. In fact, I’ve set a goal of helping at least 3 more families buy or sell real estate in the next month. Who do you know who could really use my help?”
Secret: It’s WHO do you know…not ‘DO you know’ that works. Who, what, why, where, when and how questions cause conversation. Do you or don’t you shuts conversation down!
Secret: Remember to send Thank You cards / gifts when people give you referrals, even if the referral doesn’t work out!
What was the best thing you did last year?
How is your snowboarding / skiing / playing soccer / acting at the theatre / volunteering at your kid’s school / hiking / crafting / etc.??
What are you looking forward to the most this year? Any great vacations planned or imagined?
What was your new year’s resolution?
What would happen if I found you a great rental, flip, move up, etc., property?
If you didn’t have to work at all anymore, how would you fill your days?