"The Sales Secrets of High-Performing Companies" With Katya Mihaylova, City Manager - Pass the Keys

career and business interviews with experts Nov 09, 2022

By Kristina Todorova, Head Coach and Founder, Coaching for Transformers

At Coaching for Transformers, we are committed to helping our community monetise their passions, skills and expertise, and create income streams that allow them to find fulfilment, freedom and joy in their day-to-day lives. Today, I am going to introduce you to one of the leading short-let management companies in the UK and their sales guru - Katya Mihaylova, City Manager for their London division. Since Pass the Keys was founded in 2015, the company has helped hundreds of people monetise their homes and create passive income by renting their properties, and you will learn a few of their sales secrets and what it takes to excel at making sales. 

Katya, welcome and thanks for joining me on the blog. Pass the Keys has achieved tremendous growth over the past few years, and you have played a key role in supporting the expansion of their London portfolio. Can you share more about your role with Pass the Keys and the company itself?

Pass the Keys is the leading short-let property management company, operating across the UK. My current role is within Operations management as a City Manager for London. Being a City Manager means that everything within a city (London) sits under my management - from the quality of the service we provide to who we hire and how fast the portfolio grows The dynamics in our operations are always changing, stimulating us to adapt and drive innovation in such a fast-growing industry as short-letting. 

I am lucky to have a very proactive and understanding team, and we always cope with any industry changes. We have managed to rebuild our team from scratch after the pandemic and this has only helped our professional growth.

As a property management company that continues to move from strength to strength, what are the key strategies (aka sales secrets) you have employed to facilitate such business growth?

Sales is the key element of our portfolio growth. We face many challenges when it comes to short-letting due to multiple city-related rules, terms and conditions, and the concerns of our property owners. Being confident in the service you provide, and showing that confidence either face-to-face or during a phone call is the key to success in any business. My personal secret is to always believe in everything you sell, have passion for it, and simply follow up with your clients. We live in a world full of automated emails, templates, and a lot of sales tactics but -nobody teaches you how to sell with passion. 

Are there any sales techniques that you use with potential clients who are considering joining the Pass the Keys portfolio as short-let hosts?

I have created a very structured step-by-step process to help me provide the same quality service to short-let hosts (property owners) across the city when arranging a sales meeting:

1. Book a call with the prospect to introduce myself and tell them about our operations and success in the industry.

2. Discuss the business, and explain the benefits of working with Pass the Keys.

3. Always offer a face-to-face (or video) call depending on the host’s location and allow them to understand how much you value their business and their property.

4. Always be on time, and even have a small welcome gift for the client before they have registered. 

5. Never say ‘IF you register’ but say ‘WHEN you register’ with Pass the Keys.

6. Give them the opportunity for questions and always be ‘one email away’ if there are any concerns. 

What is the number one thing that you have learnt in your role that has helped you to improve your sales skills?

Be confident. Sometimes the actual statistics and numbers do not matter that much, but what matters to your clients is how you present yourself, your team, and your achievements. 

Often, short-let property management companies have a bad reputation, and it can be challenging to change the initial perception. Showing a bit of extra confidence is what helps you become better at selling and gaining your client's trust. 

A lot of people, entrepreneurs in the service industry particularly, have a fear of “selling” because they do not want to be seen as “sleazy”. I have felt that way myself and some of the founders I have coached have had similar fears. Can you share a few tips on overcoming the fear of “selling” and improving your confidence?

Know your market and audience - we are very fortunate to be living in a world full of online training and supporting tools that can easily help us to understand our target audience and demographics.

Remember what your final goal is - KPIs are important but they are not everything. Setting your own targets helps with getting that extra confidence, and improving your mindset and presentation each time. 

Also - be brave! There is nothing more important than believing in yourself when selling any product.

Pass the Keys is a great example of a company that has helped so many people create additional income streams by renting their properties, and I love your mission. Where can our readers learn more about it?

Pass the Keys is growing every day - we are so lucky to have over 70 franchise partners. You can visit our website here

Each week our new joiners publish their welcome blog posts at https://blog.passthekeys.co.uk/ - this is where you can learn more about our hosts and their properties. In addition, you can find us on Linkedin, Facebook and Instagram: 

https://www.linkedin.com/company/pass-the-keys/mycompany/

https://www.facebook.com/passthekeys 

https://www.instagram.com/passthekeysuk/ 

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