In this interview, Jodi Houle, a relatively new ISA, speaks with John White about her work at NAEA.

JW: So you started relatively recently, right? How do you like working as an ISA?

JH: I love it, actually. I feel like we’re helping people.

JW: Who are you helping?

JH: Both people who need to move, and our own Market Maker members. Well, I like making people feel like there is a better way; I have been talking with people who have horror stories to tell, about their past experiences with realtors. I can speak confidently about how hard-working our agents are, how great their process is for home selling, etc. And the nurtures or even listing appointments are helpful to our members, too, and their businesses; they get to add value to those potential home sellers in a way that is new – for those who once had a bad experience, and are needing to have their home sold, NAEA’s process can seem like an unexpected gift.

JW: Can you say a little more about those poor experiences people had with other realtors?

JH: A lot of time I hear from them, agents just want the listing, and that’s it. And then they don’t do much. They just expect another buyer’s agent to bring them the buyers. That undermines confidence in real estate agents all over, until we can show them otherwise.

JW: Was it difficult learning the scripts?

JH: Well, I wrote them down. Like, word for word. And then I wrote them down again, using slightly different words at certain parts. I had to do what I had to do to internalize the basic way to help people, so in any given situation, what I need to say will just come naturally. ISA Boot Camp helped a lot! And Jeff (Quiane) is a great coach. He was really good about making helpful suggestions.

JW: Is there one particular experience you found especially rewarding? Like in a unique way?

JH: Yes, but it was not unique. It’s that moment when I have a conversation with someone who had a bad experience before, so maybe now they’re an expired or a FSBO. They start off with a negative attitude, and I often allow myself to be a sounding board for their frustrations. But then there is usually a moment in the conversation when their perspective brightens. That’s always my favorite moment!

JW: Jodi, thanks so much. I know you want to get back to your calls, so I’ll let you.

JH: Sure, John.