With the new year about to dawn, it’s time to level yourself up. We’ll close out the year with a monthlong 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 having coaching clients from all over the country (and a few outside of the country), I consistently hear the same struggles arise for agents. At some point in every agent’s career, you feel like you’re in a gridlock when it comes to business. You may go into the office daily 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 brings you to a spiral of antiquated 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 view their businesses. I am sharing my top six tips that will help you grow and nurture your business in untraditional ways and, ideally, reignite your passion for this business.
Don’t give up when 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 begin to shift, too. We start 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-paced market and continue to make your calls. How challenging it feels to continue to send your newsletter even when you think no one is reading it or interested. How challenging it feels to continue sending your mailers 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 hard for you, it’s hard for others, too. 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 aren’t able to continue persevering 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 the countless ways to succeed, whether through door knocking, cold calling, open houses, community events, mailers — you name it. There seems to be an expectation that you must do all these things to be successful, which creates a heavy burden on our shoulders. However, the reality is that you should only be doing what you are good at.
Read that again. You should do what you’re good at. Be honest about where you struggle, and hone in on your strengths. When you find what you’re good at, you should dedicate all your energy and time to that 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 reference these notes often.
Self-evaluation is one of the most vital practices we can incorporate into our businesses. Whether you’re seasoned or a brand new agent, each transaction gives us the opportunity to grow and learn. Some of the lessons may seem more evident than others, but if you sit down and truly evaluate each transaction, I guarantee you will learn some lessons that don’t seem as obvious.
Get a transaction notebook, and take five minutes on the day a transaction closes to write down your notes while it is still fresh in your mind.
- Did you forget to remind the sellers about the utility transfer?
- Did you compromise on personal boundaries that are important to you by responding to your client’s calls at 9 p.m.?
- Did you get angry with the other agent and say something you regret?
Write it down. Learn from it, and make sure that you’re improving in the areas you’ve identified with each transaction.
Pro-tip: Do this with your transaction coordinator and get their take on it, too.
Get curious about your fears in real estate. When you do this, you can shine a light on what is holding you back.
When I start a new coaching session, being honest about their fears is the first task I give my clients. Fear has a different meaning for each of us, and it takes on various forms depending on the person and the circumstances.
My fear has always come out in the form of anxiety. When I’m experiencing anxiety, I tend to think about the worst-case scenario, and, despite my best efforts to prevent this, I live in that space temporarily. It can be a scary space to sit in, but essential nonetheless. I’ve 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 botching a transaction? Be honest with yourself about these fears and what is 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. Release the ones that are no longer serving you.
We are constantly fed this idea that you must 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 get clear on what works best for 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 have been in the business for over 10 years, and I still use a Google sheet to keep track of my leads. This isn’t because I haven’t tried Top Producer, SalesForce, Zoho, and every other CRM that exists. It’s because, after trial and error, I found the most basic spreadsheet is what 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 need to find what works for you regardless of what others may tell you. Remember, nobody knows you better than you do.
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 are doing all day long. If that works for them, more power to them, but if it doesn’t work for you, you are not alone.
We are fed the idea that to be “productive” or “successful,” we have to sit in front of a computer for eight hours a day. But, seriously, where did that 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. No one says you need to be in your office all day, every day, so why are you?
Start to notice the times when you’re most productive. For example, do you get more done in the morning or afternoon? Can you tailor your schedule to accommodate the times when you’re most productive?
So much of our struggle as agents is finding a healthy work-life balance. If we can commit to knowing ourselves and honoring that, we can create more balance and freedom in our lives. For example, if you work best between 8 a.m. and noon, you can commit to being in your office during those times. And once you get to 12 p.m., you have the freedom to do what will make you feel good.
- Is it time alone to sit 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 release the guilt of being off 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’s really that simple.
Real estate is a beautiful business because our actions measure our success. Realtors love to blame the market or their circumstances if they’re having a hard time reaching 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 outside of 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?