Which Rugby Referee does Your Agency Resemble?

I’m not a big rugby fan but I have been sucked in during the World Cup.

My sporting background is in football and I’ve always found it interesting how respectful rugby players are towards the ref compared to footballers.

I watched the Wales versus South Africa match at the weekend and I was struck by something which kept happening.

It wasn’t the relentless, smashing into each other of men who had forearms the size of my torso.

Neither was it the total and utter, almost life or death desire to win shown by both sides.

It was the referee and the way he handled the game.

Usually in football a good referee is one you don’t notice. But I noticed this rugby ref for all the right reasons. As my Irish cousin kept reminding everyone in earshot this ref, Wayne Barnes, was the only Englishman in the quarter finals, so he was bound to stand out.

Now I’m not going to pretend to have a clue about rugby rules but an aspect of Mr Barnes’ approach to the game impressed me a lot. And I saw a parallel with what some forward thinking agents are doing.

He communicated constantly with the players. He explained the thinking behind his decisions, established his authority without being condescending and even warned players of potential infringements and penalty pitfalls. He seemed very much in charge to my inexperienced eyes.

This constant communication is an approach the best estate agents have. We work with several who write weekly blogs, produce regular newsletters and are always look to be seen to be involved with community groups and events in the areas they serve.

By committing to maintain a high profile these agencies are keeping in the minds of the local audiences who could eventually instruct them. They are constantly establishing themselves as being knowledgeable local experts who are worth listening to.

Now back to the rugby.

The following day I caught the second half of Scotland versus Australia. The ref, the now more famous than he’d probably like to be Craig Joubert, on this occasion didn’t impress me and that’s not just because he made a human error right at the end.

The level of communication didn’t seem as constant and when he did speak with the players it seemed much more dictatorial bordering on smug a couple of times. Then to cap what was not his finest 80 minutes he ran off the pitch without shaking the players’ hands at the end.

Now why he ran off – I don’t know. But what I saw at the weekend was two referees with two different approaches to the same sport. One I liked – the other I didn’t.

I see the same in estate agency. Is your way more like Wayne’s – constantly communicating, persistently proactive, establishing your expertise and showing a level of authority?

Or are you content to be Craig – sending out messages only when you have to, assuming your view as an ‘expert’ is a god given right and moving away as quickly as you can once the job is done?

So are you a follower of Wayne’s Way or another name on Craig’s List?

To end on a rugby theme clever PR and a commitment to intelligent marketing are just two ways your agency can show an instructions drought the red card.

Thanks for reading and here’s to your next instruction.


Jerry is a multi award winning journalist turned PR man working with estate agents across the UK. To request a copy of his free guide – Using PR to Get More Instructions simply email him at Jerry@propertyprexpert.co.uk

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