April 2005


HOW TO AVOID THE BIGGEST SALES MISTAKES

by DAN ALLEN
The word “sales” is funny. Many times at our workshops, we ask people to define “sales” and get all sorts of interesting answers. Unfortunately, most of them are usually incomplete or, even worse, completely off the mark. Responses typically include everything from “building relationships” to “closing the deal,” both of which possess elements of truth but aren’t thorough enough to fully explain the sales process. One of the reasons for this is that our perception of selling is governed by our everyday observations and experiences. It’s natural for our perception to be colored by the way salespeople in the title and settlement industry have tended to develop and retain business relationships. A real definition of successful sales activities should focus on only two things: 1) how we acquire new clients, and 2) how we grow and retain business relationships with existing clients. Using this test, anything we do or our organization does that directly and tangibly contributes to these two things can be considered “selling.” Anything else has to be defined using some other word. It might be worth doing, but it’s not sales. MORE STORY
Reprinted with permission. Dan Miller is CEO of RightNow Business Development Systems, a company that helps its clients improve sales results. He can be reached at dmiller@nowstuff.com 

TLTA BOARD MEETING SCHEDULED FOR APRIL 7 IN AUSTIN

The next TLTA Board of Directors meeting will be on Thursday, April 7, 2005 at 9:00 a.m. The meeting will be held at the new Hilton Hotel in Austin. If you have not attended a Board meeting in the past, it's an excellent opportunity to see your association at work. Contact Leslie Midgley at 512.472.6593 for more information.

SIGN UP FOR TLTA COMMITTEE SERVICE

We are beginning the annual task of assigning volunteers to the 2005-2006 TLTA committees.  Committee work is the absolute core of the association. The TLTA Board of Directors recently voted to consolidate many of the existing committees in pursuit of greater efficiencies within the committee structure.  In many cases the newly restructured committees will have new names, broader functions, and larger numbers of members with specific issues addressed by subcommittee work.

Please click here to review the committee volunteer form which includes a brief description of all committees and the estimated number of meetings to be held between June 2005 and June 2006.  Then complete the form and fax or e-mail it to TLTA at 512-472-5931. Committee assignments will be finalized after the Annual Conference and volunteers will be notified by the end of June. 

TLTA DAY AT THE CAPITOL DRAWS A CROWD TO AUSTIN

TLTA’s Day at the Capitol brought 50 of our members to Austin for a close-up view of the inner workings of the legislative process. Title industry members who participated met with more than 100 state legislators on March 2. The morning started with the lobby team and Legislative Committee Chair Bruce Boyer providing updates on legislative and industry issues and hot tips on communicating effectively with the legislators. Rep. Byron Cook from Corsicana, gave the group an inside view of the legislative process and an update of the Legislative Session.  After lunch, the group headed to the Capitol and spent the afternoon meeting with their respective legislators. A huge thank you to all our participants, especially those who took the initiative and sought out legislators other than those they originally were scheduled to meet. Day at the Capitol demonstrated to everyone involved the importance of communicating title industry concerns directly to our elected officials. This event gives TLTA and the industry more presence in the legislature and a better position as we work to positively impact public policy in the future.           

PAC BOARD RESTRUCTURING

The PAC Board of Trustees held a planning meeting on March 1, in conjunction with the Day at the Capitol event, to continue their restructuring efforts.  A new and much larger PAC Board of Trustees will be elected at the annual conference with representation from every legislative district in Texas.

PAC GOLF TOURNAMENT WILL BE HELD JUNE 9 IN GRAPEVINE

A PAC Golf tournament will be held at the world’s first NFL-themed golf course, the Cowboys Golf Club, in Grapevine. The tournament will be played on Thursday, June 9, 2005, in conjunction with the Annual Conference. The morning will begin with breakfast for all golfers in the Champions Dining Room at the Cowboys Golf Club followed by an 8 a.m. shotgun start. Your registration fee includes: Transportation (if needed) from the Gaylord Texan to the course, Buffet Breakfast, Green Fee, Golf Cart, Range Balls, all food and drink on the course, and the awards luncheon. REGISTER NOW and receive a $30 gift certificate off a future round of golf!  Click here to register to play in the PAC golf tournament.
 
Partner with the PAC - Become a Golf Sponsor
Your company will be on par with these sponsorship opportunities! Sponsorships range from $300-$2000 and offer many benefits so, Get in the Game! For more information click on the link below.

PICK LAKE GRAPEVINE!  JOIN US AT THE GAYLORD TEXAN JUNE 9-11 FOR TLTA'S ANNUAL CONFERENCE

Our conference committee and staff are in high gear finalizing plans for TLTA's 95th Annual Conference to be held June 9-11 at the Gaylord Texan Resort in Grapevine. Make your reservations now to attend TLTA's premier annual event with educational programs and social functions that will please the most discerning attendee. You won't want to miss this year's menu of topics and speakers, and the "just for fun" events are sure to entertain young and old. 

To sweeten the deal, we've reduced full member registration fees by 26% this year! That means a full member registration that cost $400 last year will now cost $295. 

Watch your mail for the conference brochure and in-depth program descriptions, or go to www.tlta.com to register online. Click here for more information.
 

CHAPTER NINE OF THE INSURANCE CODE IS NOW TITLE ELEVEN - ORDER UPDATES FOR BASIC MANUAL NOW!

Chapter 9 of the Insurance Code regarding Title Insurance was rewritten by the Texas Legislature and adopted effective April 1, 2005. The section currently entitled Chapter 9, Section I in your Basic Manual will now be Title XI, Section I. 

*ADDED BONUS!! The Title XI Insurance Code Basic Manual update includes a special supplement to assist you in finding all the familiar articles of Chapter 9 in the new Title XI. This essential tool will take the guess work out of referencing items in the new Title XI. NOTE: You must purchase this update for your Texas Title Insurance Basic Manual to be current.

Click here to order your update online    Click here to download an order form.

If you have any questions, please contact the TLTA Office at 800.472.1711.
 

NEED MORE 2005 MEMBERSHIP DIRECTORIES?

If you’re involved in the title insurance business, the TLTA Directory is the only resource that provides all the information you need in one easy-to-use reference. Order your copy of the 2005 TLTA Membership Directory today, and keep members and associates' names and numbers right at your fingertips.
 

CERTIFICATION COMMITTEE UPDATE

Some members of the Certification Committee, chaired by Joey Prohaska, will meet in early April to review curriculum outlines that have been developed by subcommittees during the year and to plan the next step.  This committee continues to do the hard work that is required to build this kind of program from the ground up.  

EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION - OUR MEMBERS RECOMMEND US!

HOUSTON REGIONAL SEMINAR -FEBRUARY 2005
Brandy Lowke assisted with the Individual Member Exhibit at the Houston Seminar in February.
 
Attendees enjoy lunch before the seminars begin.

President Terry Grantham talks about the benefits of membership to attendees.
 
A big thanks goes out to Brandy Lowke, Member Services Committee member for her assistance in manning the Individual Membership booth. She has been to the majority of our Regional Seminars, assisting staff behind the registration desk as well as manning the booth.  We really appreciate the help, Brandy!

UPCOMING ON THE EDUCATION SCHEDULE

April 9, 2005  (Saturday)
South Texas Regional Seminar
South Padre Island, Radisson

April 19, 2005 (Tuesday)
Advanced Closing Seminar
Houston, Hotel Derek 

April 20, 2005 (Wednesday)
Management Seminar

Houston, Hotel Derek

June 9-11
Annual Conference
Gaylord Texan Resort
Grapevine, Texas 

Click here to register online or download a registration form

TLTA STAFF PROFILE - KELLY WARREN

Chances are when you call the TLTA office, you're greeted with a pleasant "Good morning, TLTA - this is Kelly." The face behind the voice is Kelly Warren, TLTA's Member Services Assistant. A native of Victoria, Texas, Kelly earned a BS in Communications from the University of Houston-Victoria. Kelly has been with us for almost four years, and during that time has served as the primary front office and telephone greeter, in addition to assisting with membership and communication duties. Kelly's responsibilities range from processing publications orders, to notifying members when their directory update is due, to assisting with seminar registrations and member inquiries. She also assists with the e-commerce section of the website and processes your online orders, and does all of it with a unique combination of humor, efficiency and an eye for detail. As Kelly has assumed more and more responsibility over the years she has become an indispensable part of the TLTA team. In addition to all her responsibilities at TLTA, Kelly managed to plan her wedding this year. She became Mrs. Philip Warren in January - congratulations, Kelly!

THE TLTA GREENSHEET

The TLTA Greensheet is the fastest, easiest way to reach over 5,000 people in the title industry. Whether you're advertising for a job opening or selling your business, equipment or service, an ad in the Greensheet will get immediate results! It's your online connection to industry related employment and business opportunities. Click here for the latest GREENSHEET.

PUBLICATIONS

Click here to go to the TLTA On-line Store or to download an order form 

Extra copies of The 2004 Texas Land Title Institute Course Manual are available for purchase. Complete your reference library with this valuable reference tool! 

“A Handbook for Texas Abstracters and Title Men”  Written by the late Frank A. Stamper, one of the most distinguished members of the Texas title insurance industry, this textbook is a must for every title professional. Topics include The Evolution of Title Evidence and Assurance, The Texas Registration System Reading, Interpretation and Platting of Property Descriptions and The Abstract Plant. 

SEND US YOUR FEEDBACK – AND YOUR IDEAS

We welcome your comments or suggestions about DOWNDATE, as well as other TLTA publications and products. Please forward information to kathy@tlta.com.

Downdate is published every other month for the benefit of its members. The opinions expressed herein represent the views of the authors and are not necessarily those of TLTA. Downdate and TLTA disclaim any responsibility for views expressed or statements made in any article published in Downdate.