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5 Things We Can Learn from Von Hoffmann's 'Top Producer Secrets'

By Star Report 3 min read

By Carol Douis, Regional Director in South Carolina - New Home Star

Top producing salespeople are easy to pick out from a crowd. Often, they're equipped with an underlying confidence and sales skills that come off naturally. In other words, there are certain qualities that are undeniable in an outstanding performer, allowing them to go above and beyond what is expected of them on the sales floor. New Home Star's unique training processes support this theory; they believe that through role-play, ongoing study, unwavering confidence, a dedicated attitude and an understanding of their target consumer group, a sales agent can consistently excel in their role and perform as a top producing sales professional.

In 2010, Shirleen Von Hoffmann (author and sales expert) published a book called Top Producer Secrets: A New Way of Selling for New Home Sales Professionals. Immediately, this read became an effective resource for those in the real estate industry looking to sharpen their sales skills. While an in-depth description of Von Hoffmann's sales 'secrets' can be found in her book, here are five basic takeaways that any sales professional can be reminded of in their pursuit to become a top producer in the new home sales industry: 


• Build relationships, build rapport and gain credibility. 

"Strategic advantage lies in the leverage of being able to create friendships." Buyers are more likely to go through with the investment if they trust (and like) their seller. Part of being an outstanding salesperson is building a connection that's genuine and personal. This basic practice will take you far.


• Maximize conversations with each and every prospect. 

Von Hoffmann says that the best question salespeople can ask themselves after meeting with a potential buyer is, "Did I do my best to maximize my time and questions?" Review what you've learned about the buyer after each and every appointment. Focus on all aspects of the sales funnel; What are they looking for in all of these areas? What do you need to ask during your next meeting?

• Always follow up.  

"Think of follow up as an opportunity to do something your competition isn't doing." With the statistics in your favor, you can easily stand out by implementing this simple practice. Not all salespeople engage in consistent follow-up phone calls or emails. This is the perfect way to gain that competitive edge. 


• Listen actively.  

"When you really listen, you find out needs and wants. Remember, people aren't interested in what you have to sell, they are interested in what they need and want." This tidbit is a guiding principle to successful sales. If you're actively listening, rather than just speaking and selling your product, you'll better grasp your buyers' hot buttons. You'll be surprised to find exactly what can close that sale.

• Stay engaged after the sale. 

Von Hoffmann continually highlights the importance of proactivity. It can be all too easy to close a sale and mindlessly lose touch with new homeowners, but communication is key in maintaining a reputation of customer satisfaction. Follow up after the buyers have moved in, stay engaged in their lives and build on that relationship. This can lead to referrals and positive word-of-mouth. Your job isn't done once you've closed the deal! 


New Home Star's Carol Douis brings 25+ years of successful sales leadership and experience to serve homebuilders and developers in the areas of sales strategy, coaching, training, positioning and organizational development. Douis has a strong history of successfully maximizing sales effectiveness for both large and small sales teams. 


Originally published Mar 2, 2016 under Explore the latest topics, updated March 15, 2024

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