The Short List: Hicks Malonson’s Strategies For Managing Challenging Personalities

by Peter Thomas Ricci


Hick Malonson is an associate broker with Harry Norman, Realtors in Marietta.

Every week, we ask a real estate professional for their Short List, a collection of tips and recommendations on an essential topic in real estate. This week, we talked with Hick Malonson, an associate broker with Harry Norman, Realtors in Marietta, who shared with us his strategies for managing challenging personalities.

5. As real estate agents, we have all heard expressions such as “buyers are liars,” especially when clients purchase a home that is nothing like what they told us they wanted; well, if that is the case, we were probably too busy “presenting,” and didn’t spend enough time listening.

4. The personality of the client is an important part of the equation for an agent. Sometimes, you can get a read right up front; other times, when it takes a while, the key things are communication and questions.

3. Confirming questions along the way can really help bring out what is important, as well as who the true decision maker will be. “Mrs. Buyer, you mentioned that having a chef’s grade kitchen is important. What do you like about this kitchen?” The answer will usually be the opposite – meaning, what is missing. Take notes so that you can find out what is really important. Be sure to ask open-ended questions, instead of those that can be answered “yes” or “no,” so that you can start building that question to confirm what the client is looking for. Those questions do look for a “yes” or “no” answer to gain agreement.

2. On the listing side, instead of running through all of the services you will provide, ask about the expectations of the client. Then you can make sure to highlight the service that you provide that will meet – and exceed their expectations.

1. Knowing and setting the expectations early on will allow you to move through the process by showing benchmarks along the way, and you can make the necessary adjustments that keep everyone on the same page, leading to not only a very satisfied client, but an advocate for your business in the future, as well.

Hick Malonson is an associate broker with Harry Norman, Realtors in Marietta. A former professional golfer (he played in both the South African PGA Tour and Nike Tour), Hicks entered real estate in 1998, and since then, he has been a part of Harry Norman’s $1 million, $2 million and $3 million councils on numerous occasions. He is also an active member of the community, and has been Rotarian of the Year at the Rotary Club of North Cobb on five separate occasions.

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