By Chris Nichols
Assumptions — we all make them. But have you ever stopped and thought about the dangers involved in making even just simple assumptions?
Wikipedia states, “In logic an assumption is a proposition that is taken for granted, as if it were true based upon presupposition without preponderance of the facts.”
Have you ever assumed what the needs of a client were without asking them specifically? This generally results in expectations missed, whether it be a buyer seeing houses he or she doesn’t really want, or a seller who is more concerned about selling quickly versus getting top dollar. These are all assumptions that can be costly to our pocketbooks as missed closed transactions and frustrated clients.
There’s also another type of assumption that can be costly: Oftentimes, in the middle of a transaction, we make assumptions about the REALTOR(R) on the other side of the transaction. Or perhaps about their client.
It is so easy to fall into this trap and allow our unfounded or preconceived notions dictate how we handle negotiations. I recently had this very thing happen to me as a seller allowed their assumptions cloud their judgement of my buyer due to an FHA appraisal coming in short of value. Unfortunately, the seller’s REALTOR(R) could not change their client’s presupposition that this was a ploy on the buyer’s part.
The last assumption I want to touch on is the assumption we sometimes make about leaders in our association. I can speak from firsthand experience as the president of a local association that I have learned much in the two plus years leading up to taking this office. I can remember the many misconceptions I had about all three levels of our association. But as I’ve taken the time to learn, to ask questions, and to get involved, it has been easy to replace incorrect assumptions with actual facts and understanding.
Stephen R. Covey said, “We simply assume that the way we see things is the way they really are or the way they should be. And our attitudes and behaviors grow out of these assumptions.” And speaking to the monetary effects of assumptions, John Seely Brown said this, “The harder you fight to hold on to specific assumptions, the more likely there’s gold in letting go of them.”
Go grab yourself a pot of gold!