Be That Calm in the Real Estate Storm
This one is for all the grinding Realtors out there.
All of you dedicated workaholics who against all odds, get up, put your head down and plug away each and every day. While we often don’t do much to improve our public image (insert Instagram pic of Miami Realtor cheeseball leaning on his $250k car here), but I really feel many, if not most, Realtors don’t get nearly the credit they deserve for how hard they work. You enter the battle zone every time you step outside of your office and into an environment you can’t completely control. It’s crazy out there, I get it, and I want to help you out just a little here.
Let’s start with identifying the undeniable problem here - your work place is pure chaos. You can’t control the ‘who’, the ‘what’, the ‘why’, the ‘when’ or even the ‘where’. The people, the places, the motivations are always in flux. The game is in a constant state of change and it all seems so out of your hands.
But I have a theory - you can control the ‘how’.
It’s a fact - you can’t control a lot of what is going to happen in your busy day as a Realtor, but you can control ‘how’ you handle everything inside of your changing work environment. Every confusing step in your day can be handled in superior fashion and with careful organization. That is, if you plan for that imminent chaos.
While you may not know what is going to happen next in a real estate transaction - you can predict and prepare for it.
For some reason, Realtors forget that they are running a business. We are likely the only industry where 90% of business owners refuse to admit that they need an actual business plan. We are starting our year off January 1st from a point of disorganization and often we never recover until it is too late.
But not everyone operates this way - successful Realtors start off their year with plan and constantly revisit and revise it. They know how to control the ‘how’.
Pinpointing the pressure points
You can’t adequately solve a problem unless you know exactly what the problem is. The problem is exactly this for many Realtors - the industry is chaotic, therefore you feel is is acceptable to operate chaotically inside of it. The world around me is out of control, so I will just try and blend in. That’s obviously the wrong approach, but I completely understand why most Realtors brains go there.
Unpredictable and free-for-all environments need exactly the opposite approach. A plan.
Putting together a proper plan
Snoozeville, I know, but the most boring part of your job is also the most important. It sets the tone that you are operating an organized enterprise and gives you that uber-important point of reference to keep you running in as straight a line as possible.
First, be honest with yourself with what you need the most guidance with. A plan that is too easy for you to follow is likely not a great plan, but neither is one filled with software that stresses you out to learn, Be realistic here.
An absolute must is to call yourself out on your weaknesses and start thinking of the best strategies in which to deal with them. No choice, this accountability piece has to be there.
Second, do some research. Talk to other Realtors who seem to not share those same weaknesses and find out exactly how they are getting it done. I assure you that most Realtors share the same weaknesses, they have just found proper methods and plans to address them. You gotta know what success will look like for yourself.
Third, be focused more on skills than goals. Realtors always get caught up in the quantity game. I want to sell 20 houses this year, or make a certain level of income. Abandon those thoughts for those that focus on quality. Sharpen your skillset and the deals will follow. That mindset works in any city, in any price point, in any market.
Fourth, put pen to paper - not a few notes in Google Keep or Evernote. There is something that intrinsically changes inside you when you write something out. It’s a commitment.
Practice? we talking ‘bout practice?
If you are too young to remember this Allen Iverson reference, youtube it. But yes Allen, practice. Realtors seem to prefer an unprepared and learn-on-the-job mentality over a systematic and anticipated one. Again, a by-product of a chaotic industry, but all of these missed opportunities at game-time are costing you money, clients, referrals and likely crushing your confidence all at once.
How much better could you do in your next listing appointment if you had run through your presentation 50 times over and instead spent your time looking your potential clients in the eye rather than scrambling through notes? Nobody wants to get into business with a tornado of a Realtor.
How about open houses? It’s a weird fascination I have to visit open houses in cities I will never actually buy a house in, but I do it more to see how Realtors prepare themselves for the unexpected. As an industry, I would give us a D- in that category.
When I used to sell, I loved taking my Thursday or Friday afternoon and preparing everything I could to be useful as possible for a potential purchaser on the weekend. The reaction was almost one of surprise with how useful you were. Be smart, anticipate the questions and earn yourself some business. It 100% works.
There are a thousand different things realtors need to plan for, but I would suggest start with time-blocking 5-10 hours a week to improve your skill set as a great start. Why did you lose that listing? Answer that question honestly and start working on the solutions so that it won’t happen again next time. Practice what a better outcome would actually look like and I guarantee you the game-time results will be there.
It’s certainly not glamorous work, but sorry, you gotta do it. It’s about being prepared for the unknown. The more confidence you have with your responses, the more you believe that you will find the path to victory, the more you practice the steps to successful outcomes - the more likely it will happen in the real world.
Be that calm in the real estate storm, that Realtor survives to trade another day.