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»September 2014, Volume 7, Issue 3Keller Center Research Report - Creating a Competitive Level ofEngagementAndrea Dixon, PhDWho’s the Boss: You or Your Cell Phone?Jim Roberts, PhDListening, Empathy, and Sales EffectivenessSusie Pryor, PhD and Avinash Malshe, PhDCompetitiveness, Coachability, and Context as Key Determinants of SalesPerformanceKirby L.J. Shannahan, PhD, Rachelle J. Shannahan, PhD, and Alan J. Bush, PhD (Newfoundland)How the Internet Can Impact Your Business and What to Do About ItJane Lee Saber, PhD (Canada)What Makes Working in Sales Satisfying: Who You Work With or WhatYou Work For?Kirk Wakefield, PhDINSIDER: The Power of Visual StorytellingNatasha Ashton, JD/MBA CandidateINSIDER: The Effortless ExperienceGrant Senter

Keller Center Research ReportBaylor University, Keller Center for ResearchHankamer School of BusinessOne Bear Place #98007, Waco, TX 76798www.baylor.edu/kellercenter » Keller [email protected] Center Research Report is a trademark owned by Baylor University. Baylor University. All rights reserved.Editorial StaffAndrea Dixon, PhDEditorCokie ReedAssociate EditoriKeller Center Research ReportSeptember 2014, Volume 7, Issue 3

Table of ContentsKeller Center Research Report – Creating a Competitive Level of EngagementAndrea Dixon, PhD1Who’s the Boss: You or Your Cell Phone?Jim Roberts, PhD5Listening, Empathy, and Sales Effectiveness10Susie Pryor, PhD and Avinash Malshe, PhDCompetitiveness, Coachability, and Context as Key Determinants of SalesPerformance17Kirby L.J. Shannahan, PhD, Rachelle J. Shannahan, PhD, and Alan J. Bush, PhD(Newfoundland)How the Internet CanImpact Your Business and What to Do About ItJane Lee Saber, PhD (Canada)22What Makes Working in Sales Satisfying: Who You Work Withor What You Work For?27Kirk Wakefield, PhDINSIDER: The Power of Visual Storytelling30Natasha Ashton, JD/MBA CandidateINSIDER: The Effortless Experience37Grant SenteriiKeller Center Research ReportSeptember 2014, Volume 7, Issue 3

Keller Center Research Report – Creating aCompetitive Level of EngagementAndrea Dixon, PhD – Editor, Keller Center Research ReportBridging current academic research and the real estatepractitioner audience, the Keller Center Research Reportplays uniquely in the knowledge marketplace. Our KellerCenter team identifies cutting-edge rigorous research withinteresting implications for the real estate market. Wework closely with our authors to ensure that the scholarlywork is translated for our audience. Once the academicresearch is translated, we work intensely to ensure thateach issue of the journal breaks through and captures theattention of you, our reader.The e-newsletter that announces each issue of the Keller Center Research Report includes eyecatching photos and active links to the journal articles to capture your attention and engage youas a reader. In a world where business people receive “piles” of emails each day, we set a goal tobeat the click through rates of industry averages. Using key performance email marketingmetrics as a benchmark, we are pleased to report competitive levels of engagement amongour Keller Center Research Report readers.The Comparison: WhoWhen we compare metrics measuring email activity levels (Silverpop 2013), we see how theKeller Center Research Report compares to the national industry averages. Relevant comparisongroups include the real estate industry, education and nonprofit organizations. Benchmarking theKeller Center Research Report against these three targets on key email metrics gives usperspective on how competitive the Keller Center Research Report is when engaging ouraudience.The Comparison: WhatTwo key metrics provide perspective on the target audience’s level of engagement: open ratesand click-through rates. Useful for observing trends, the open rate is measured by the number oftimes an email message is opened. The open rate can be measured as gross or unique. While thegross open rate (which represents the number of times an email is opened either by originalrecipients or others to whom the email has been forwarded) is an interesting metric, the uniqueopen rate narrow this definition to include just one opened email per one recipient. Thus, theunique open rate tells us how well we are reaching our subscriber audience. Open rates are notthe only significant measure of subscriber engagement. In fact, the click-through rate measuresthe percentage of email messages that captured at least one click from a recipient. As a result, theclick-through rate suggests a level-deeper engagement.1Keller Center Research ReportSeptember 2014, Volume 7, Number 3

KCRR Creating a Competitive Level of EngagementThe Competitive ComparisonCompared to industry averages (Nonprofits, Education, and Real Estate), the Keller CenterResearch Report strikes a very competitive position in the areas of unique open rates and clickthrough rates. The Keller Center Research Report’s average unique open rate was 26.6% whichexceeds all benchmark industry comparisons. The nonprofit arena’s unique open rate at 17.2%represents the lower end of our benchmarking comparisons while the real estate industry’sunique open rate is a little higher at 20.9%. Coming in closest to the Keller Center ResearchReport is education with the unique open rate of 26.2%. When comparing Keller CenterResearch Report’s unique open rate to these other industry averages, our journal’s newsletternarrowly beats education but outperforms real estate (by 5.7%) and nonprofits (by 9.4%).Comparison of Unique Open Rates for 2013(Source: Silverpop 2013 vs. Internal Records)26.60%17.20%20.90%26.20%KCRR Nonprofit Real Estate EducationOpen rates are not the only significant measure of subscriber engagement. To ensure that thecontent from the Keller Center Research Report impacts our readership’s businesses, we wereeager to compare click-through rates to these other industries. Since the click-through ratemeasures the percentage of email messages capturing at least one click from a recipient, it is ameasure of impact of the content itself.Compared to industry averages (Nonprofits, Education, and Real Estate), the Keller CenterResearch Report strikes a very competitive position in click-through rates. The Keller CenterResearch Report’s average click-through rate was 7.6% exceeding all industry comparisons. Thenonprofit’s click-through rate at 2.0% is again the lowest comparison while the real estateindustry’s click-through rate is a little higher at 2.8%. Education fares better than nonprofit orreal estate with a click-through rate of 5.8%. When comparing Keller Center Research Report’sclick-through rate to the industry averages, our journal’s newsletter bests education (by 1.8%),real estate (by 4.8%) and nonprofits (by 5.6%). Again, as the table below illustrates, the KellerCenter Research Report exceeds national industry averages for nonprofits, education, and realestate.2Keller Center Research ReportSeptember 2014, Volume 7, Number 3

KCRR Creating a Competitive Level of EngagementComparison of Click-Through Rates for 2013(Source: Silverpop 2013 vs. Internal Records)7.60%5.80%2.80%2.00%KCRRNonprofitReal EstateEducationBy studying the unique open rates and click-through rates for several industries, we see that theKeller Center Research Report provides our readers with an engaging knowledge environment.Click-through rates are particularly important because they show how well the Keller Center isable to attract viewers and visitors.ReferencesSilverpop (2013), 2013 Email Marketing Metrics Benchmark Study: An Analysis of Messages, IBMPublishing.About the AuthorAndrea L. Dixon, PhDFrank M. And Floy Smith Holloway Professorship in Marketing, Baylor UniversityDr. Andrea Dixon (PhD - Indiana University) has an industrial background in research, planning,and advertising, her research interests embrace behavioral issues related to sales, service, andclient satisfaction. Andrea has published in the Journal of Marketing, Harvard Business Review,Organizational Science, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, Leadership Quarterly,the Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management, the Journal of Satisfaction,Dissatisfaction and Complaining Behavior, and several other journals. In 2002, Dixon's researchpublished in the Journal of Marketing was selected as the award-winning research in the salesarea. Prior to joining Baylor, Dixon was the Executive Director of the MS-Marketing Programand the Ronald J. Dornoff Teaching Fellow at the University of Cincinnati. She has co-authored3Keller Center Research ReportSeptember 2014, Volume 7, Number 3

KCRR Creating a Competitive Level of Engagementthe book, Strategic Sales Leadership: BREAKthrough Thinking for BREAKthrough Results, andmultiple industry-wide research texts. Dixon serves on three editorial review boards and cochaired the American Marketing Association's 2007 Winter Educator Conference. While servingas a faculty member at the University of Cincinnati (U.C.) and Indiana University-Bloomington(I.U.), Dr. Dixon taught an array of graduate and undergraduate courses. One of U.C.'s MBAEXCEL Teaching Award winners, Dixon was selected for a national teaching award by IrwinPublishing, as a distinguished professor by Indiana University MBA students, and for auniversity-wide award by her academic colleagues at I.U. In 2008, she was named the Academyof Marketing Science's Marketing Teacher Award winner. Prior to teaching at U.C., Andreaworked closely with GAMA International as the Senior Director of Product Development andMarketing.4Keller Center Research ReportSeptember 2014, Volume 7, Number 3

Who’s the Boss: You or Your Cell-Phone?Jim Roberts, PhDThe cell-phone is an indispensable tool in thereal estate professional’s tool box. This heavydependence upon one’s cell-phone, however,can come at a high cost. Let’s be honest witheach other. Do you talk, text, or search listingson your cell-phone while driving your car? Abrief report by the National Safety Council(NSC) entitled, “The Great Multitasking Lie,”lays to rest the idea that we can operate a 2,000pound plus motor vehicle and text/talk withoutplacing ourselves and others at risk. Trying to do two or more things at once is often referred toas inattention blindness. Drivers talking on their cell-phones miss as much as 50% of theirdriving landscape including stop signs, pedestrians, or on-coming traffic. We know we shouldnot do it, yet we continue to do so despite the risk to life and limb. Loss of control is the sine quanon of addiction. Does your cell-phone use also interrupt conversations with friends and lovedones? Have you argued about your cell-phone use with your spouse? Have you tried to cut-backbut couldn’t?Dare I say, you might be addicted to your cell-phone? Do you check your cell-phone every 6.5minutes and up to 150 times a day? Do you have 6,234 Facebook friends? Or, spend the majorityof your waking hours with your cell-phone on your body? If you said “Yes” to any of the abovequestions, please read the remainder of this article closely.One does not begin life as a cell-phone addict – it’s a process. The process of addiction beginswhen a seemingly innocent behavior (shopping, Internet use, exercise, or cell-phone use)becomes harmful and slowly morphs into an addiction (Grover 2011). All behavioral addictionseventually reach a tipping point where the affected individuals can no longer control their cellphone use and the quality, and even quantity (in the case of texting and driving) of their lives arebeing undermined. Treatment is more likely to be successful if the behavior in question can becaught before the individual hits his or her tipping point.Fortunately, we have identified what is considered the six core components of any type ofaddiction - substance or behavioral (Grover 2011). The six signs of cell-phone addiction include:salience, mood modification, tolerance, withdrawal, conflict, and relapse. Please read thedescription of these six signs that follow and answer the two questions at the end of eachdescription. By the time you’ve completed this task, you will have a better idea of whetheryou’ve reached your tipping point when it comes to your cell-phone use.5Keller Center Research ReportSeptember 2013, Volume 7, Number 3

Who’s the Boss: You or Your Cell-Phone?The Six Signs of Cell-Phone Addiction Scale1. Salience: A behavior becomes salient when it is deeply integrated into your daily routine. It isan essential activity that dominates your thinking, dictates your emotions, and plays an importantrole in your daily routine. Sixty-eight percent of adult Americans sleep with their cell-phone nextto their bed, which is causing problems for many whose sleep is being interrupted throughout thenight by tweets (not from the birds outside), beeps, vibrations, bells, and whistles that are part ofthe cell-phone’s irresistibility. In essence, your phone is saying, “You can’t ignore me, I amessential to your happiness and I won’t be ignored.” Answer the following two questions as itpertains to how salient your cell-phone is to your everyday activities.A.Is the first thing you reach for afterwaking in the morning your cell-phone?B.Would you turn around and go back home if you leftyour cell-phone at home on the way to work?YesNoYesNo2. Euphoria: The feeling of anticipation or excitement that precedes and/or follows the use ofyour cell-phone is a mood modification resulting in euphoria. For a sales professional, it could beyour next big sale. Who knows what the beep, buzz, whistle or stylized ring-tone might have instore for you - exciting stuff. An uplifting text from a friend, a funny tweet, or hilarious sixsecond Vine video, or a racy disappearing Snapshot picture, or a large number of likes to variousposts on Instagram, Pinterest, or Facebook can all brighten your day. Please answer thefollowing two questions that ask the role your cell-phone plays in managing your mood.A.I often use my cell-phone when I am bored.B.I have pretended to take calls to avoidawkward social situations.YesNoYesNo3. Tolerance: Like in drug and alcohol abuse, tolerance addresses the need for an everincreasing dose of the behavior to achieve the desired high. Research has shown that the longerpeople had their cell-phones, the more they are likely to use it. The increasing array of functionsthat can be performed on one’s cell-phone guarantees that our dependence on our cell-phone islikely to increase. Please answer the following two questions as they relate to your cell-phoneuse.A.I find myself spending more and more timeon my cell-phone.6YesNoKeller Center Research ReportSeptember 2014, Volume 7, Number 3

Who’s the Boss: You or Your Cell-Phone?B.I spend more time than I should on my cell-phone.YesNo4. Withdrawal symptoms: The feelings of irritability, stress, anxiousness, desperation, and evenpanic that often occur when you are separated from your cell-phone are good examples ofwithdrawal symptoms. Sixty-eight percent of all adults have an irrational fear of losing theirphone. British researchers first coined the term “Nomophobia” (fear of no mobile phone) todescribe the fear many of us feel when our cellular umbilical cord is severed for even the briefestof time. How long was it before you replaced your cell-phone the last time you broke it, lost it, orheaven forbid, had it stolen? My guess is not long - the same day if possible. These are the sametypes of reactions drug users have when separated from their drug of choice. Answer thefollowing two questions as they relate to any type of withdrawal symptoms you may haveexperienced when separated from your cell-phone.A.I get agitated or irritable when my cell-phoneis out of sight.B.I have gone into a panic when I thought Ihad lost my cell-phone.YesNoYesNo5. Conflict: A common outcome from addiction to one’s cell-phone is conflict. Does yourspouse or children complain that you are always on your phone? Do you allow texts, calls and emails to spoil your vacations and personal time? Are your work activities interrupted by playinggames, visiting Facebook and other countless forms of entertainment offered via your cellphone? Don’t even get me started on calling and/or texting while driving and the havoc thatwreaks. Please answer the following two questions as they relate to the conflict created in yourlife by your cell-phone use.A.B.I have argued with my spouse, friends, orfamily about my cell-phone use.YesNoYesNoI use my cell-phone while driving my car.6. Relapse: When we acknowledge that our cell-phone use may be undermining our well-being,we attempt to stop. But, then we slip back. It’s like any bad habit we might have, say smoking oreating too much, we start a diet, attempt to quit smoking or drinking, only to relapse after a shortperiod of time. It’s like being an alcoholic; you must be constantly vigilant if you want to keepcell-phones from invading every aspect of your life. Have you ever been interrupted by a text or7Keller Center Research ReportSeptember 2014, Volume 7, Number 3

Who’s the Boss: You or Your Cell-Phone?phone call that you just had to answer when having a conversation with a loved one? If you have,you may have crossed the tipping point. Please answer the following two questions as it relatesto your attempts to control your cell-phone use.A.I have tried to cut-back on my cell-phoneuse but it didn’t last very long.YesNoB.I need to reduce my cell-phone use but amafraid I can’t do it.YesNoYour Cell-Phone Addiction ScoreWell, it’s time to see if you have crossed the tipping point from reasonable cell-phone use topotentially addictive cell-phone habits. To calculate your score, simply add up the number of“Yes” responses to each of the twelve questions of the Six Signs of Cell-Phone Addiction scale.Results Key8 “Yes” answersI will personally make a reservation for you at the Betty Ford Clinic forhabitual cell-phone users.5-7 “Yes” answersYou have crossed the tipping point and are moving full-steam ahead tofull-blown cell phone addiction.3-4 “Yes” answersYou have not yet reached your tipping point but need to carefully assesshow your cell-phone is impacting your life.0-2 “Yes” answersYou are either living in a monastery or at least have the patience andself-restraint of a monk. Or, technology simply scares you.If you answered “Yes” to five or more of the questions on the Cell-Phone Addiction scale, it’sstill not too late. I prescribe a Digital Detox to help you set healthier boundaries regarding yourcell-phone use. There’s no magic cure but with a few simple life-style changes, you can controlyour cellular life rather than having it control you. It’s about finding a balance.Try instituting a cell-phone-free meal time. All cell-phones must be off and out of sight. You caneven place all cell-phones in a cell-phone “prison” (I bought one at Dillard’s) and set thesentence for one hour or however long you want. No cell-phones until they have served theirtime. Just maybe you will rediscover the beauty of a leisurely meal and good conversation.How about no cell-phones after 10:00 p.m.? Give yourself time to decompress before going tobed. The restorative power of a good night’s sleep pays benefits all day long. Set aside a few8Keller Center Research ReportSeptember 2014, Volume 7, Number 3

Who’s the Boss: You or Your Cell-Phone?minutes at night before you go to bed or on your days off tocheck texts and e-mails but no more - no peeking.Enlist your spouse, kids, friends, and colleagues to help you stickto your new life-style. Detoxing can be difficult for some but it’sworth the effort. Breaking the wireless chains leaves time forreflection, introspection, solitude, time with others, more exercise and less stress.ReferencesGrover et al. (2011), “From Use to Abuse: When Everyday Consumption Behaviors Morph intoAddictive Consumption Behaviors,” Journal of Research for Consumers, 19.Griffiths, Mark D. (1996), “Gambling on the Internet: A Brief Note,” Journal of GamblingStudies, 12, 471-3.About the AuthorJames A. Roberts, PhDBen H. Williams Professor of Marketing, Baylor UniversityDr. Roberts is a well-known author with approximately 75 articles published in the academicliterature. He is the Ben H. Williams Professor of Marketing at Baylor University in Waco,Texas where he has been a faculty member since 1991. His research regularly appears in manyof the top marketing and psychology journals and has received two Paper-of-the-Year awards.A primary focus of Dr. Roberts' work over the last 10-15 years has been the psychology ofconsumer behavior. Somewhat of an anomaly among marketing scholars, his research is largelyfocused on the dark side of consumerism and marketing. Current research efforts focus on thetopics of materialism, compulsive buying, credit card abuse and self-control. His book, ShinyObjects, takes a careful and amusing look at how our love of material possessions impacts ourhappiness and what we can do to find true happiness in a culture awash in material possessionlove. A nationally recognized expert on consumer behavior, Dr. Roberts has been quotedextensively in the media and has appeared on the CBS Early Show, ABC World News Tonight,Yahoo.com's "The Daily Ticker", Time.com, US News & World Report, New York Times, USAToday, The Wall Street Journal, National Public Radio, Cosmopolitan Magazine, Glamour, andmany other newspapers, magazines, websites, and television appearances.9Keller Center Research ReportSeptember 2014, Volume 7, Number 3

Listening, Empathy, and Sales EffectivenessSusie Pryor, PhD and Avinash Malshe, PhDCommunication skills are the single mostimportant determinant of effectiveness in bothsales and sales management (Deeter-Schmetz,Goebel and Kennedy 2008). Poor listeningbehaviors by sales personnel contributesignificantly to performance failure -- costingAmerican businesses billions of dollars inrevenues annually (Brownell 1990; Grossman2011). Research confirms the importance oflistening, determined its cognitive dimensions,and identified positive outcomes, includingbuyer loyalty. Researchers have begun to investigate affective components of listening – such asempathy and concern – and the relationship between these and adaptive selling and salesperformance (cf., Castleberry and Shepherd 1993).In this article, we report the findings of a study involving in-depth interviews with home buyersthat concerns buyer perceptions of real estate agents’ listening behaviors. This work offersinsight to real estate professionals concerning forms of listening and their role in building andmaintaining long-term buyer-seller relationships (Aggarwal, Castlebery, Ridnour, and Shepherd2005).BackgroundInterpersonal communication includes both outwardly-oriented (expressive) behaviors andinwardly-oriented or listening (recognition) behaviors (Nichols 1995). Listening behaviorcomprises three components: sensing, evaluating, and responding (Ramsey and Sohi 1997).Sensing (the initiation of listening behaviors stimulated by verbal and nonverbal cues) andevaluating (the assessment of customer statements to discover underlying meaning) are cognitiveactivities. Responding is behavioral and its purpose may be to inform, control, empathize orritualize (Mead 1986). We know there is a positive association between listening perceptions andrelational outcomes. Scholars have speculated that salespeople must engage in all threecomponents of listening to be perceived as effective listeners (Ramsey and Sohi 1997).While early researchers focused on cognitive features of listening, more recent work suggeststhat listening skills are best understood if examined within relational structures. In fact, it isargued that: the effectiveness of sales interactions is determined by the interpersonal interactionbetween the salesperson and the customer, relational listening is a communicative phenomenonenacted “in-relationship,” and the processes underlying relational communication may beproductively understood by examining how relational partners account for the listening process(Halone and Pecchiono 2001; Williams and Spiro 1985).Salespeople who display empathy may be particularly effective communicators. As thesalesperson’s empathy increases, their level of listening increases, as does their subsequenteffectiveness (Comer and Drollinger 1999). Empathy is the ability to accurately perceive the10Keller Center Research ReportSeptember 2014, Volume 7, Number 3

Listening, Empathy, and Sales Effectivenessinternal frame of reference of another as well as underlying emotions and meanings (Rogers1959). When salespeople use active empathic listening (AEL) they attempt to intuitively assessthe meanings underlying buyer messages by placing themselves in the customer’s placethroughout the interaction (Comer and Drollinger 1999). From an AEL perspective, forinterpersonal communication in the buyer-seller relationship to be effective, genuine concern(empathy) on the part of the salesperson is requisite.Research finds a strong positive correlation between empathy and salesperson listening, trust inthe salesperson, and satisfaction with the salesperson; trust and satisfaction, in turn, arepositively related to future interaction expectations (Aggarwal, Castleberry, Ridnour, andShepherd 2005).Literature from diverse fields suggests that empathy has both cognitive and affective components(Duan and Hill 1996). The cognitive component, sometimes called perspective-taking orcognitive-role-taking, consists of an intellectual understanding of another person's situation(Barrett-Leonard 1962). The cognitive component involves understanding on an objective level.The affective component, sometimes called empathetic concern, consists of an internal emotionalreaction that produces understanding of another's feelings (Allport 1961). The affectivecomponent is more difficult to explicate than is the cognitive component, since it involvesemotional bonds between people that enable them to sense and process emotional states. Anumber of theorists have adopted the position that cognitive and affective aspects are bothessential and work together (Brems 1989), while others feel that empathy can be either cognitiveor affective depending on the situation (Gladstein 1983).Our StudyBecause of our interest in developing a deeper understanding of buyer beliefs, feelings, andexperiences, we conducted indepth interviews with 31 home buyers. Informants had establisheda commercial relationship with a realtor within the past 12 months. The length of the commercialrelationship ranged from two to six months. Buyers ranged from 21 to 65 years in age; 52% werefemale and 40% were first-time home buyers.From the buyer’s perspective, every characteristic of listening (sensing, evaluating, responding)has both cognitive and affective characteristics. That is, sellers signal simultaneously the extentto which they understand buyers’ needs and concerns and the extent to which they care aboutsuch needs. In this study, buyers identified empathetic listening behaviors as key to thedevelopment of long-term buyer-seller relationships.Buyers were alert to the extent to which their realtor paid attention to what they were saying, aswell as whether the salesperson appeared aware of buyers’ verbal and non-verbal cues. Buyersthemselves were sensitive to nonverbal aspects of the salesperson’s listening (sensing) in theform of their facial expressions, body language, gestures, alertness, and/or maintaining eyecontact. As a result, our study suggests that each of the three dimensions of listening sensing,evaluating, and responding have affective and cognitive dimensions.Not surprisingly, buyers found realtors to possess greater understanding of their needs over time.Importantly, buyers attributed this not merely to an accumulation of information by the realtor11Keller Center Research ReportSeptember 2014, Volume 7, Number 3

Listening, Empathy, and Sales Effectivenessbut an indicator of a shift in the realtor’s perspective towards a more relational and empatheticviewpoint. Buyers discussed this in terms of both cognitive and behavior components of therealtor’s performance. Many buyers talked about whether they felt their realtors were trying togain a more relational-level of understanding of them or simply viewed them as just “customers”looking for a service -- a purely transactional-level assessment (Comer and Drollinger 1999).Finally, when evaluative communication is imbued with affect (such as empathy or caring),customers perceived the seller to be more effective at sales. Realtors who were perceived to beempathetic listeners showed houses which better met buyers’ needs and interests (creatingefficiency for all parties), provided more ancillary information (e.g., regarding loans, schools,churches), met with buyers at times convenient to them, and communicated through meansappropriate to the buyers’ own modes of communication.Implications for Real Estate ProfessionalsThis study offers insight useful to real estateagents in terms of understanding buyer attitudesand expectations. Customers are not naïve andthey fully know that salespeople employ variousstrategies to create a positive impression. Yet,buyers expect appropriate sales behaviors whichserve as important cues into the realtor’s level ofattention to buyer needs and also to the realtor’slevel of empathy.Few would be surprised to learn that there is astrong relationship between listening skills and buyers’ perceptions of sales effectiveness andsatisfaction (Aggarwal, Castleberry, Ridnour and Shepherd 2005; Ramsey and Sohi 1997).However, this study suggests that all listening is not equal. Buyers want not only evidence thatthe real estate agent has heard and understood them, but that the agent has a genuine interest inthe buyer. Agents, then, have the opportunity to enhance relationships merely by signaling to thebuyer not only are needs understood, but also that they matte

catching photos and active links to the journal articles to capture your attention and engage you as a reader. In a world where business people receive "piles" of emails each day, we set a goal to . Silverpop (2013), 2013 Email Marketing Metrics Benchmark Study: An Analysis of Messages, IBM Publishing. About the Author Andrea L. Dixon, PhD