People-Meleon & The Art Of Matching Your Leasing Prospect

Posted By: Bob Donahue Leadership,


What are chameleons known for?  Chameleons possess a host of physical adaptations which help them survive. Most notably, they are known for their swiveling eyes that help them pinpoint fast-moving prey and their color-changing skin helps them blend in, stand out to potential mates, and intimidate rivals. 

Ok, but what the heck is a people-meleon?!  A people-meleon is a rare species that is ½ human and ½ chameleon.  They are a rare, special breed that immediately adjust their personality to match the person they are interacting with.  It is never about them and always about the other person.  They know a little about a lot and always find a common ground to kindle a conversation.  People just seem comfortable with them and gravitate towards them.  The most talented leasing professionals all become people-meleons.  Do not worry, anyone can do it.


Where do you start?  Like the actual chameleon, use your eyes to observe the person in front of you and the environment around you.  Does the person appear comfortable?  Do they seem distracted?  What is their body saying?  Are they taking up a lot of space and seemed relaxed or do they appear to be cowering and unsure?  Sense their sense of urgency.  Most times, a prospect’s body language speaks before they tell you with physical words.  Even if someone seems uncomfortable, do not give up or write off the tour.  There are there for one reason, to lease!  People buy from who they trust and are most comfortable with.  It feels weird because they feel weird.  Get them comfortable by focusing on the delivering the tour the way they need it.  Be HIGHLY aware of how they react to you and be prepared to adapt quickly.


If someone is social, promote resident events and all the fun things to do in the neighborhood.  Introduce neighbors, teammates, and pets on tour.  They are social, so make the tour social for them.  Make it a fun experience and let them talk about themselves.   Start talking numbers and you are going to lose them quick.


On the other side of the coin, if a very analytical businessperson comes in and asks about the average utility costs,  lease break options, distance to major highways, direction of the windows in the unit, and the dimensions of our parking spaces she will completely turn off and lose interest if you talk to her like the social tour you just gave.  With this tour, become a numbers person and the one with all the answers.  And if you do not know the answer to a question, get it ASAP.  Sell the convenience of living with at your community and how we will make everything easier for her. 


Remember, this is not about you.  People-meleons are generally a very happy and social species that find it challenging to not talk about themselves.  Resist the urge, focus on the prospect, and gain the lease instead.  ABC -Always Be a Chameleon