Six Secrets to Keeping Your Balance, Your Business and Your Humor
By Julie Escobar, Director of Corporate Marketing, ProspectsPLUS!
If you’re like many agents, today’s market has you feeling like a contestant on Survivor, Real Estate! Unfamiliar challenges, uncommon objections and nagging uncertainty can throw you–and your productivity–right off balance.
What you might not realize, however, is that uncertainty can be a good thing. It can force us out of our comfort zones and propel us to get creative, be resourceful and–most important–take action. If you’re ready to loosen the grip of uncertainty on your career, then I invite you to adopt the following six success strategies:
1. Maintain a positive attitude. Attitude is everything. Well, almost everything. A recent Harvard Business School study reported the four key elements for success in life: experience, knowledge, intelligence and attitude.
Think for a moment how you would answer that survey if polled. How would you rate each of those factors in order of importance? Harvard found that experience, knowledge and intelligence comprise only 7% of the elements for success. Leaving attitude to represent a whopping 93%! Imagine that! The most critical facet is the one we have the MOST control over. So take control. Rid yourself of the negative and empower yourself with the positive, and you’ll be well on your way to keeping uncertainty at bay.
2. Over-prepare. What happens when you know for a fact that you are ready for anything? When you’ve done your homework, practiced, drilled, rehearsed, dotted every “i” and crossed every “t” on your to-do list? Over-preparing for your next listing presentation, price reduction, face-to-face meeting or negotiation gives you the confidence and certainty you need to win. Our company president, Jim Morton, always teaches the importance of going the extra mile to be prepared–so prepared that even if someone were to wake you in the middle of the night from a sound sleep to ask if you would be willing to cut your commission, your words and mannerisms would flow naturally and effortlessly–and, of course, your commission would be intact!
3. Know your numbers. There’s never been a more important time to be up to date on statistics. Successful agents–especially in today’s market–are masters of information. They bring to the appointment table all of the ammunition they need to make their point, prove a position, price effectively and help the consumer understand better than anyone else the reality of the local market. Use visuals such as graphs and statistics to chart market changes over the past month, year, two years and more. What does all of this homework afford you over your competitors? Confidence and credentials–two extraordinary essentials for surety and success.
4. Stick to a schedule. Without one, it’s too easy to get off track and find yourself in a rut–and nothing can fuel uncertainty quite like a good old-fashioned rut! Put yourself on a clear, concise, tight schedule that includes the all-important must-do prospecting time each day. A precise and practical approach to working ON your business (not just IN your business) will not only make you more productive, but it also will eliminate a great deal of stress. Prioritize your to-do list, being sure to keep “money” activities such as prospecting, presenting and closing on top.
5. Master your ABCs. I am reminded of an article by Floyd Wickman that features this idea: In today’s market, you must Always Be Closing. In a market that’s constantly changing, shifting and adjusting, you must help your customers make the decisions that are right for them rather than play the procrastination game. To close is to ask. Ask to list. Ask to accept. Ask to reduce. Ask to buy. Sound simple? It is. Yet most agents today are not asking–which means they’re not closing. Go ahead and ASK!
6. Do more. Times have changed. The economy is shifting. These factors are far beyond our control and represent the change we are feeling today. It’s OK, though; it’s the nature of the beast. Nothing lasts–not the good or the bad–but how we react to change certainly plays a large role in whether we barely survive, continue to thrive or find ourselves looking for “a real job.” The not-so-secret secret here is to do more. Be better. Get stronger at your skill sets. Master your dialogues. Do your homework. Start earlier and stay later when you have to. Readjust your calendars. Create more value for your customers. Consistently stay in touch with your sphere of influence. Commit to learning, fine-tuning and crafting your presentations and your presence. Challenge yourself to step outside of “what you’ve always done,” and seek to go further than you’ve ever gone.
I found an interesting quote by Ilya Prigogine this week: “The future is uncertain, but this uncertainty is at the very heart of human creativity.” What a great reminder for us to ignite our ingenuity. Tony Robbins tells us that resources don’t control and shape what we do and how well we succeed, resourcefulness does. In other words, it’s not your broker, not your colleagues, not the market and certainly not the new stationery that determines your success or failure. It’s that deep-down emotion that allows you to really want something that powers your resourcefulness to make it happen.
Finally, keep your sense of humor. If you implement the strategies above, you are bound to feel some change, some growing pains and, uh-oh, some uncertainty. Roll with it. Laugh out loud with your friends and your family. Let your hair down, and gift yourself with the medicinal power of laughter. Whether you are a “Jack” or a “Jill,” all work and no play makes for a dull life and a sure case of burnout.
I hope you’ve picked up a secret or two that will help you thrive in this market. And by the way, they aren’t REALLY secrets–they’re just reminders–so feel free to NOT keep them to yourself. Share them with the people you care about, the new guy or girl who’s just starting out, that old-timer in the corner who can’t seem to get out of a rut and anyone else who could use a little “shot in the arm.” One of the best ways to create abundance in your life financially, emotionally, spiritually and in your career is to share the wealth. It will boomerang back to you in extraordinary ways.
For even more ideas on how to thrive in this and ANY market, contact Julie Escobar today at 866.405.3641.