2021 was a tough year for many in the real estate business, and Chris Parsons of Harcourts Mandurah was no exception. The 23-year-old started as a Sales Consultant in his own right in September, and straight away, he faced some big challenges.
A well-intentioned mail drop regarding an upcoming development caused a media storm within weeks of Chris becoming a standalone sales agent, propelling Chris unexpectedly into the spotlight.
The media attention, social media back lash and threatening messages, threatened to derail his career before it even started.
“It really was a horrific time”, said Mr Parsons.
“Anyone who knows me knows that I’m anything other than what I was being painted – certainly not a heartless or greedy person.”
“I discovered quickly the truth didn’t really matter – the story quickly gained a life of its own.”
“I was literally afraid to leave home and even afraid to be at home. I had death threats and was the target of numerous online trolls.”
Harcourts COO, Lisa Pennell said in her more than 20 years of crisis management work in the real estate industry, she’s seen innocent people vilified on numerous occasions.
“The nature of our industry is that agents are guilty until proven innocent, not the other way around.”
“There’s an inherent level of mistrust around real estate agents and so issues can quickly spiral, both in the media and via online social platforms.”
“Harcourts has a crack team to help when this happens. When the story started blowing up about Chris, we quickly established his innocence in the story and then the team went about managing the risk and unwinding the damage.”
“It was an incredibly stressful time for Chris, as it is for anyone in this situation. We were thrilled to be able to help and support him and are even more thrilled to have watched his recovery since – such tremendous results.”
“Fortunately, through careful and expert management by the Support Team at Harcourts Australia, the public narrative was effectively managed and corrected, saving Chris from reputational damage.”
Like a phoenix from the ashes, Chris was able to go on to scale great heights over subsequent months, hitting new records for transacted sales. With the support of the entire office, he came back stronger than ever, culminating in 10 sales in January with the value of sales exceeding $4 million.
This remarkable accomplishment is testament to his resilience and determination.
As Harcourts Mandurah Licensee Paul Blakeley puts it: “Chris’s ability to overcome his early setback, along with his strong work ethic and desire to learn have set him up for a long and successful real estate career.”
“The Mandurah office has been a big part of Mr Parson’s journey through the years.”
“Chris started with us as a 20-year-old in Feb 2018 and worked as a buyer’s agent with one of our high performing teams for about 2 and a half years. We couldn’t be happier for him.”
“An outstanding achievement.”
COO Lisa Pennell continues: “When faced with challenging situations, people always have a choice – to fold and give up, or to fly, use the experience to become even stronger.”
“Chris chose the latter, and we could not be prouder.”
As Mr Parsons says himself - “Without the support of my bosses and the team at Harcourts Mandurah as well as the Harcourt corporate team, this would have been really hard to come back from. But having had their support, I was also even more determined to become a successful agent.”
2022 is off to a great start for Mr Parsons: he was placed number 13 in the January REIWA Top Unassisted Salesperson by Listing Sold Award.
“I had high hopes for my real estate career but never expected to achieve such great results so quickly! A huge thanks to the management & team at Harcourts Mandurah for the opportunity and the ongoing training that allowed me to get to this point.”