In the spirit of Dale! - Posted by Kristine-CA

Posted by Hal Roark on May 05, 2003 at 08:21:11:

You can carry a side arm here in public all day long. Just have a license. Our bubba governor pushed that one through.

This state never ceases to entertain…


In the spirit of Dale Carnegie…help! - Posted by Kristine-CA

Posted by Kristine-CA on May 04, 2003 at 17:54:09:

I need help figuring out how to handle the people I hire (title, PIs, gardeners, attorneys). I am very clear when I start with them about what I do and what my expectations are. And then, sometimes sooner, sometimes later, the phone calls don’t get returned. The work gets done apparently when they feel like it, not when they said they could do it. No communication, no excuses. Just slip-shod, half-assed professionalism. It’s driving me nuts.

My escrow experiences continue to be very sorry indeed. I’m usually paying for both escrow fees on a double close, buying an additional title policy and the deals are all cash with no lender docs. The ones that have no title issues should be a piece of cake. Recently, my newest escrow officer said she could close in 5-7 days if there were no title problems. So two weeks go by with me checking in every few days. She assures me there must be a title problem otherwise she would have the prelim report already. Well, it comes in totally clean. It’s been another week and I finally get escrow docs–for only one of the escrows. So 5-7 days is now going on 4 weeks. And I’m paying for this. This is the fourth escrow officer I’ve used and I thought that by being very clear with her about my expectations and the kind of deals I do, that we’d be on the same page.

What are some of the ways to motivate people to be a team player? I am having trouble figuring out what it is that these people want, so I don’t know what motivates them. I think maybe they don’t like their jobs/work. I’m always giving appreciations and compliments–because I really do appreciate when people do good work. But I am beginning to wonder if that is putting me in the category of people to blow off when one is busy. Kristine is nice enough–she won’t mind if I close the other deals first, go on vacation without notification, wait until she calls again, etc.

Do I keep looking? Or should I be trying harder to win friends and influence people?

Sincerely, Kristine

Creative manipulation :slight_smile: - Posted by Nate(DC)

Posted by Nate(DC) on May 05, 2003 at 15:03:05:

Some random thoughts:

  1. Pay more than the asking price in exchange for a service guarantee. Ask them “how much would I have to pay in order to be 100% certain that this is done on ____ day?” Of course, this only works well with a sole proprietor type operation, or one where you’re actually talking to the person who gets paid. If this is an EMPLOYEE of a title company…good luck incenting them. None of them, that I know of, like their jobs, and service is just not a premium.

Alternatively, you could try a negative approach: a penalty per diem for each day it’s late. You could couple this with a bonus for on-time or early to get people to accept.

Ex. normal escrow fee $300 (just making up #s). If we close on the 10th, I pay $500. If we close on the 11th or 12th, I pay $200. If we close on the 13th or later, it’s free.

Of course, that is a pretty severe example; maybe you would want to do something a little more gradual.

  1. The squeaky wheel gets the grease. I admit I do it myself in business - take care of the people first, whom you know will be the first to complain if they are not taken care of.

If they said they would do X by a certain date and you don’t have it, call them on that day and ask where it is. Don’t let them slide, because once you have done so, you will have established yourself as one who lets things slide. Don’t give them a chance to develop the expectation that you will be okay with things being late.

I always used to try to do something similar in school. Make sure you do very, very well on the first assignments in a class, and the teacher will cut you much more slack the rest of the term. First impressions are very powerful and you want to make sure your first impression is of someone who won’t take any guff.

  1. Keep trying?? I’m sure you haven’t tried EVERY escrow officer and PI in Bakersfield (or maybe you have, in which case, maybe it’s just Bakersfield??)

Good luck,

Re: In the spirit of Dale Carnegie…help! - Posted by Mark (SDCA)

Posted by Mark (SDCA) on May 05, 2003 at 12:47:49:

I dont think you CAN change them. It is like realtors. 99% of them are wretched. But OH how valuable is that 1%. So keep looking. And when you find a good one (realtor, title co, lawyer etc.) steer ALL the business you can to them.


Cash talks… - Posted by Hal Roark

Posted by Hal Roark on May 05, 2003 at 08:23:57:


I didn’t read all the posts below, so if this repeats, neglect it.

Cash talks. They get hit up by “investors” every day saying how many deals they can do yada yada yada. Performance speaks. Try to find the one’s that seem the most knowedegeable, flexible, etc and steer deals their way. When they see your biz is more than talk, they will do biz for you.

This is always a headache in the beginning. Persist, do deals, put money in their pocket, and they will be a reliable player on your team.

Hope this helps.


Re: In the spirit of Dale Carnegie…help! - Posted by K

Posted by K on May 04, 2003 at 22:31:02:

Well, it sounds like you haven’t really minded if they “went on vacation”… Probably you are being too “nice” and that is the whole problem. It is time for yoy to shed that image. You don’t need it anymore, especially since you know it is what is wasting your very precious time. Get down to business with these people.

Getting things done is all about keeping people on schedule. Call them each day to check progress and remind them you will be in to pick everything up on the appointed day. So what if they get irritated. Just acknowledge it’s important to you and you are depending on them. That’s rge one thing that has been most consistently shown to make people feel appreciated. If that doesn’t incent them enough to earn some extra points along the way, keep looking.

Re: In the spirit of Dale Carnegie…help! - Posted by Anne_ND

Posted by Anne_ND on May 04, 2003 at 21:53:14:


Have you flat out asked them? In a non-confrontational way such as “what can I do to enable you to keep to the deadlines we’ve agreed upon, because when you delay my closings needlessly it costs me money, and if my business isn’t a priority for you I need to know that up front”.

As others have said, it can take a long time to find a team, and rarely will they be perfect.

Good luck,


Re: In the spirit of Dale Carnegie…help! - Posted by IB (NJ)

Posted by IB (NJ) on May 04, 2003 at 21:23:33:

Kristine, I think you’re just going to have to deal with the ‘trial and error’ thing. Keep trying different folks until you find one that clicks. Like Clair stated, referrals are good as well.

It took me 1 1/2 years to find a mortgage broker who was professional enough to take me seriously. I’m sticking to him like flies on %$#. Got lucky with my lawyer as I found him on my second deal (may have to fire him though per my ‘Title co. made $4400 mistake’ post below - he’s usually on point). I just started dealing with Latino immigrants for Contractors/Handymen who have a much better work ethic than anyone else I’ve seen so that problem is completely solved.

After 3 years, I’m still putting the team together. I guess it just takes time.

Re: In the spirit of Dale Carnegie…help! - Posted by Clair-MO

Posted by Clair-MO on May 04, 2003 at 19:44:16:

Kristine, Fired them all! And ask around to the different investors, mortgage Brokers and realtors whom they use. I wouldn’t put up with any nonsense but if people are professional doing “professional work” but now are doing shoddy work! Get rid of them!!!

Re: In the spirit of Dale Carnegie…help! - Posted by RichV(FL)

Posted by RichV(FL) on May 04, 2003 at 19:38:45:


I have had the same headaches with handymen/contractors.

Since I do rehabs and rentals time is of the essence. Most of the time I take care of them with a little extra cash. Thats how I get them to put other jobs off for me, and work alot quicker. Money talks and money motivates.

Now I have handymen bird dogging for me. The bottom line is they know they are going to get the job, get a little extra cash and get paid on time…which seems to be a problem according to the contractors I know.

Best of luck,


Re: In the spirit of Dale Carnegie…help! - Posted by Dan-Fl

Posted by Dan-Fl on May 04, 2003 at 18:36:48:

I have the same problems with my workers,but my title company is great.I went through a few of them before I found her.It is a small company and I befriended the owner.I send plenty of business her way and give her gift certificates at outback on special occasions.I also have thrown a extra $100 her way for a rush job.This has worked great.

What calibar … - Posted by Ronald * Starr(in No CA)

Posted by Ronald * Starr(in No CA) on May 04, 2003 at 18:03:12:


What calibar pistol do you have on your hip when you meet with them? Maybe you need a larger one.

Good InvestingRon Starr**

Re: What calibar … - Posted by David Krulac

Posted by David Krulac on May 04, 2003 at 20:27:44:

there’s a town here that wanted to pass a law that it was illegal NOT to carry a side arm. The wild wild east?