With the new year upon us, it’s time to level up. We close out the year with a month-long focus on real estate coaches and the value of ongoing training. Expect advice from the top real estate coaches, deep evergreen training resources and more during Inman’s Coaching and Training Month.
Despite coaching clients from all over the country (and a few out of the country), I consistently hear the same struggle arise for agents. At some point in every agent’s career, you feel like you’re in a tough spot when it comes to business. You may go into the office every day and do all the “right” things, but you still don’t have the leads and sales needed to make this career work.
A quick Google search on “how to generate real estate leads” essentially lands you in a spiral of outdated information and leaves most agents feeling more hopeless than before their Google spiral.
A few years ago I developed a coaching program to change how agents see their businesses. I share my top six tips that will help you grow and nurture your business in non-traditional ways and, ideally, rekindle your passion for this business.
Don’t give up if it gets slow. Work harder than ever.
In my experience, when the market starts to shift and things start to feel slow, our confidence and drive as agents starts to shift as well. We begin to believe our businesses and markets are “tanking” and we lose the stamina to keep prospecting every day because it feels discouraging.
I understand how challenging it can be to get up every morning in a slower market and keep making your calls. How challenging it feels to continue sending your newsletter even if you don’t think anyone is reading it or interested. How challenging it feels to continue sending your emails when the only response you get is to take them off your list. I’ve been there.
The truth is that every successful agent has been there. Your perseverance in these situations sets you apart from every other agent out there. If it feels difficult for you, it is also difficult for others. I know with 100 percent certainty that if you can continue to work hard during these times, you will continue to see success. It may not be immediate, but it will come back to you.
And the agents who can’t continue to persevere when times get rough are the ones who will leave the business in the next year.
Be honest with yourself about your strengths and weaknesses:
As agents, we are told about the countless ways to achieve success, whether through door knocking, cold calling, open houses, community events, emails – you name it. There seems to be an expectation that you have to do all of these things to be successful, which creates a heavy burden on our shoulders. However, the reality is that you should only do what you are good at.
Read it again. You have to do what you are good at. Be honest about where you struggle, and hone in on your strengths. When you find what you are good at, you should devote all your energy and time to it because that is how you will get clients.
Evaluate yourself and each transaction by writing down what went well and what didn’t go so well. Look back and refer to these notes often.
Self-evaluation is one of the most important practices we can incorporate into our businesses. Whether you are seasoned or a brand new agent, every transaction gives us the opportunity to grow and learn. Some of the lessons may seem more obvious than others, but if you sit down and really evaluate each transaction, I guarantee you’ll learn some lessons that don’t seem so obvious.
Get a deal notebook, and take five minutes on the day a deal closes to jot down your notes while they’re still fresh in your mind.
- Did you forget to remind the sellers about the utility transfer?
- Have you compromised on personal boundaries that are important to you by responding to your client’s calls at 9pm?
- Did you get mad at the other agent and say something you regret?
Write it down. Learn from it and make sure you improve in the areas you identified with each transaction.
Pro tip: Do this with your transaction coordinator and get their opinion on it as well.
Get curious about your fears in real estate. When you do, you can shine a light on what’s holding you back.
When I start a new coaching session, the first task I give my clients is to be honest about their fears. Fear has a different meaning for each of us, and it takes different forms depending on the person and the circumstances.
My fear always came out in the form of anxiety. When I experience anxiety, I tend to think of the worst-case scenario, and despite my best efforts to prevent it, I temporarily live in that space. This can be a scary space to enter, but essential nonetheless. I have found that this space shows me what is truly important and what I care about most.
So what are your fears? Is it rejection, not making enough money, or a deal falling through? Be honest with yourself about these fears and what’s holding you back so you can find ways to safely challenge yourself to overcome these fears.
Find out which systems work for you and which don’t. Let go of those who no longer serve you.
We are constantly fed the idea that you have to do things one way to succeed in this business. Do you know what my advice is? Throw that shit out. That’s right. It’s time to be clear about what works best for what you. And no one knows that better than you.
You don’t need every CRM, lead generation program and campaign marketing software. You need what works for you. I’ve been in the business for over 10 years, and I still use a Google Sheet to keep track of my leads. It’s not because I haven’t tried Top Producer, SalesForce, Zoho and every other CRM out there. This is because after trial and error I have found that the most basic spreadsheet works best for me.
I encourage you to try new programs and venture out of your comfort zone, but at the end of the day, you have to find what works for you, regardless of what others may tell you. Remember, no one knows you better than you.
Find your optimal time for productivity and work within those hours. Don’t force yourself to work 9 to 5.
We all know that one agent who comes into the office every day. They start at 8, leave at 5, and you wonder what the hell they do all day. If it works for them, more power to them, but if it doesn’t work for you, you’re not alone.
We are fed the idea that to be “productive” or “successful” we need to sit in front of a computer for eight hours a day. But, seriously, where did it come from? I am least productive when I sit in front of my computer all day. The beauty of real estate is the flexibility of our schedule. Nobody says you have to be in your office all day, every day, so why should you?
Start to notice the times when you are most productive. For example, do you get more done in the morning or afternoon? Can you adjust your schedule to accommodate the times when you are most productive?
So much of our struggle as agents is finding a healthy work-life balance. If we can commit to knowing and honoring ourselves, we can create more balance and freedom in our lives. For example, if you work best between 8am and 12pm, you can commit to being in your office during those times. And once you get to 12:00, you have the freedom to do whatever makes you feel good.
- Is it time alone to sit down and read a book?
- Is it time to exercise?
- Is it time to meditate?
You can start to lean into the pieces of your life that will make you feel like the best version of yourself. When you can let go of the guilt from earlier than your friends and family, you will start to have more of a healthy work-life balance. If you have a healthy work-life balance, your success will only continue to grow because you will be happier in all areas of your life. It really is that simple.
Real estate is a beautiful business because our actions measure our success. Brokers like to blame the market or their circumstances when they find it difficult to achieve their pillar of success, but the truth is that our success is entirely up to us and us alone. The market will constantly shift, and there will always be variables beyond our control, but the one thing we can control is how we approach our business and our lives in general.
With 2023 on the horizon, what better time to start implementing these strategies than now?
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