04 Mar Are you the best broker you can be?
With its varied work routine, excellent networking potential, and the opportunity to generate performance-related income, it is little wonder that business brokerage is such a popular and competitive field amongst ambitious professionals. It is unquestionably an area of business that offers great rewards to those who excel. But just how do you become a top class intermediary in today’s workplace?
First of all, it’s worth pointing out right now that you won’t find any sure-fire quick tips here promising to turn you into a hotshot broker overnight. The internet is filled to capacity with articles guaranteeing exactly that already, and – no surprises – nine times out of ten they fail to deliver. Commerce is such a high paced, fast-moving field that most people learn pretty quickly how to spot an individual who is attempting to take short cuts.
What we can do, though, is to have a look at some of the biggest obstacles and most important duties that a good intermediary can expect to face every day of his or her working life. Because if you can get the basics right every time, you are already well on your way to becoming the best broker you can be.
Business Brokerage: Know Your Role
Getting the fundamentals right every time is of course key. But to truly excel, a top broker must be able to exceed expectations when the situation demands it. So what exactly are the core skills and duties that every intermediary should be able to display? And how do you learn how to meet the expectations of the client every time?
The core role of a good broker is not that of a salesman; nor is it to flatter the client and tell them only what they want to hear in the hope of securing a top commission. Your duty as intermediary in a sale is as a supporting role: allowing every step of the process to be completed more smoothly and satisfactorily for all parties, than if you had not been there.
In practice, it means that you should expect to get your hands dirty with the mundane jobs just as readily as with the negotiating and deal-making. Complete the due diligence, accounts reports and preliminary inquiries in time, and present your work both concisely and with an honest, candid approach. A broker who gives the appearance of being careless – or of trying to be too clever with the figures – can be enough to put a prospective buyer off making an offer.
Loyalty and discretion are the key traits of anyone well-suited to the role of a business broker. Sound judgement under pressure is an essential skill for any negotiations, and developing a long-term strategy rather than a quick fix should be your natural modus operandi.
Beyond that, remember: communication costs nothing. A few phone calls every month will be sufficient to keep your clients assured of your commitment, and that will go a long way. Your reputation as a dependable, conscientious partner is the lifeblood of your brokerage career. You demonstrate your value for money as an intermediary by maximising the sale potential of your client’s concern, whilst minimising the demand on their own time and resources. If you find you are being chased for progress or feedback by a client, your first concern should be to reflect on whether you are providing them with the quality of service that prompted them to hire you in the first place.
What Makes the Best Broker?
There is only one key to becoming the best broker you can be: experience. Not just putting the hours in, but learning from your experiences, too. An MBA is a great platform to build a career, but wider professional knowledge cannot be equalled. Entrepreneurs can become exceptional brokers because they have seen the selling process from both sides, and know instinctively what their clients’ needs are.
And learn from your mistakes too. If you find yourself contractually tied to a problem sale that eats into your time and offers little chance of recouping your costs, learn from that. Get better at identifying the work that is of value to you, too.
Trade Secrets: Knowing the Strategies for Success
Learning how to excel may require little more than knowing when to take the opportunities as they arise. That doesn’t mean agreeing to broker the first deal to come your way, but it does mean positioning your talents so that clients will consider working with you before your rivals. For many, this can mean taking a role within a larger brokerage firm.
The collective experience and the networking potential that a salaried job within a firm can offer you will usually far outweigh the loss of full autonomy that you enjoy when you choose to go it alone – especially for anyone new to the profession. Not only are you more visible, you will likely attract clients more quickly, too. Standing alone, you are faced with a slow start, and few in-roads.
That is not to say that being your own boss should not be your long term goal. Learn how to be the very best broker you can be, and you should have no trouble finding success on your own terms.
This article was contributed by BusinessesForSale.com, the market-leading directory of business opportunities from online media group Dynamis.