A Nod to Og Mandino
By America’s Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
Have you ever read Og Mandino’s The Greatest Salesman in the World? It’s a powerful little book that has help transform the lives and careers of countless people around the world. There is a set of lines in one of the scrolls that says, “I will persist until I succeed. I was not delivered unto this world in defeat, nor does failure course in my veins.” It is an empowering affirmation.
There are a lot of ups and downs in our business. We get “no’s”, hit roadblocks, face fears – sometimes all the above in the same day. But all of those things can be learning opportunities more than obstacles. Springboards more than setbacks. What makes the difference for the top tier agents who seem to take it in stride? They keep a solid mindset for success. They persist until they succeed. They don’t let the negative little things affect the bigger goals they have in front of them. That’s good practice for them, and for all agents.
If it’s an attribute you’d like to be better at – then take a look at these five ways to develop more persistence in your life:
1. Study those who’ve mastered it. There are a lot of ‘underdogs’ in the world. Folks people said would never make it because of the challenges in their path. Study those people who didn’t heed what others said was possible and instead persevered despite every odd. What are the common denominators? What did they do differently? How did they think differently? Make note of those things and adopt them into your life as well.
2. Keep your WHY in mind. In a previous post we talked about having a big WHY. Your why is the reason you get up and get going every day. It’s the center of your purpose. What are you working towards? What can you build for yourself and your family if you keep to the goals you’ve set? When the going gets tough, as it often does, remembering what you are working for is a great motivator to stay the course.
3. Keep your expectations low and energy high. Here’s the thing – when we get too caught up in high expectations, that build-up can rarely live up to what we’ve made things up in our heads to be. Instead, keep your expectations low, your energy high and you’ll be more likely to be pleasantly surprised rather than sorely disappointed. ¬¬¬¬¬¬
4. Prepare for the worst, plan for the best. When you’ve got your business model down pat, and you are the most prepared you can be to meet the demands of your market, persistence is a whole lot easier. Top agents don’t worry about the objections they face, because they know them in advance and they know how to handle them. They don’t worry so much about chasing the next commission because they have a business plan that is based on consistently working their referral base so there is a steady stream of business heading their way. For some a plan seems BORING. But a plan – is what keeps you GOING when things go a little haywire. Revisit yours if you have one and if you don’t, there’s no time like the present to write one!
5. Trust your tribe. If you’re not currently part of a mastermind group or integrity partnership, consider it. Having a “tribe” you can turn to when things get rocky and you’ve got quitting in your crosshairs can be the difference between walking away and breaking through a barrier. That whole self-made man or woman thing is a fallacy. Most people at the top didn’t get there, nor do they stay there by themselves! Lean into your tribe – and if you don’t have one yet, get one – quick!
Take a page out of Og’s book and persist until you succeed. Then persist some more. Success isn’t really a destination after all, it is a process day by day, and year by year. There’s not a whole lot you can’t get through with the right attitude, mindset, and strategies behind you. Keep to it! And remember if you need help? I’m here! Now go out there and make something happen!
An Honest Question
By America’s Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
As a professional, you probably have high standards when it comes to hiring people to work for you-right? Are you insistent on top service levels and the highest quality products? How often in your career have you taken a step back and given yourself a performance review? I ask because too often we get in a groove of doing things the same old way, and stop looking for ways we can improve our performance, raise our own bar for service and excellence, and allow the rationale that we are “busy” be the reason we cut corners or drop the ball.
So this month’s challenge is this: Give yourself a review. If you were a home buyer or seller – would you be compelled to work with you? Maybe that’s a resounding, “YES!” But can you do better? Can you comfortably and confidently say there’s no room for improvement? What can you do starting this week that will tighten up the systems you have in place, sharpen your skills, and improve the customer experience? They don’t have to be big ticket changes, unless those are warranted. The top agents in our business are in a constant state of tweaking their skills, their business plans, and the tools and techniques they use to communicate with their clients and customers.
Here are 5 things to look at when evaluating your performance:
- Your customer reviews. Are you getting positive reviews from your current and past clients? Are they referring new business to you? Do you provide your customers with a survey asking for a review (and provide an opportunity to share their comments)? If not, you’re missing a chance to capture great feedback that you can use in your marketing when it’s good and use to learn where you need improvement when it’s not as high a rating as you’d like.
- Your interaction with other agents. Are the agents you work with, co-broke with, and interact with sending referrals your way? Are they singing your praises or questioning your professionalism? There will always be professional rivals of course, but there shouldn’t ever be enough room for someone to question your integrity, commitment to service, and capabilities. There will always be professional rivals of course, but there shouldn’t ever be enough room for someone to question your integrity, commitment to service, and capabilities.
- Your numbers. What is your list to close ratio? Your call to appointment ratio? Your results in relation to your goals? Everything else in this otherwise “people” business can get emotional at times, but the bottom line numbers tell the truth. If you’re not on mark to hit your goals with solid lead conversion and solid listing/sale numbers then something’s off. Get with your broker or integrity partner and don’t stop until you figure it out.
- Your credentials. Are your credentials on pace with your career goals? In other words are you taking the extra training and skill sharpening needed to become certified in the areas of our industry that interest you the most? Top agents are passionate about constant improvement and their credentials reflect that. Do yours?
- Your inner truth. We can sometimes slip some things by the rest of the world, but in our heart and mind, we know when we are not giving our all. We all have an internal compass that lets us know when we are on track or off. What is yours telling you? That you are giving 110% or that you have much room for improvement, or maybe, like most –there are areas where you can strengthen your game. Listen to that inner truth and adjust your actions and mindsets accordingly.
In all that we do, it’s good to take a few steps back now and then to assess whether you are bringing your best self to the table each day – and when you are not, to shift your daily action steps to do better That’s not to say that you need to work 24/7. Find your balance. Bring your best to both your personal and professional life and don’t be shy about asking for help managing that process. Some of the best of the best in our business don’t fly solo. They have a mentor, coach, mastermind group – or all three to help keep them on track.
Consistency is More Vital Now Than Ever Before
By Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
There was a program on the radio the other day that featured a lot of what people would call, “one-shot-wonders”. Those artists that knocked it out of the park with one song, then were rarely, if ever heard from again. It makes you think, “what happened?” These people were clearly talented, had what it took to reach the top, so why just the one hit? It reminded me a little of some real estate agents I’ve met. Eager, talented, and full of action – ONCE. They showed up strong once and got a listing. Awesome-right? Absolutely. But every day is a new day in this business. There’s no resting on your laurels, ask any top producers out there. They’ll tell you that no one, not even the heavy hitters have the luxury of not showing up day after day, year after year.
“But Roberta, it’s hard!” I know, but it doesn’t have to be as hard as some make it. Not when you put the right systems in place and treat your business like the business that it is. And those same top producers I just mentioned will tell you that it gets easier the longer you stay at it. Why? Because you will develop that brand name awareness that will help drive referrals month after month. They will tell you that they no longer have to wonder where their next commission is coming from or IF they have another commission coming in. They can count on referrals and business from their sphere of influence and farm because they are actively engaged in reaching out to those VIPs on a consistent basis.
Step one: Get your database of friends, family, past clients, and in a manageable system so you can market to them. This is where most agents break down. They feel as if they have to start with a giant, end-total number. To which I like to pull out this gem from Arthur Ashe, “Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” If your goal is to have 1,000 people in your database but you currently only have 120 in, don’t wait for the 1,000 to be inputted. At least get SOMETHING out to the 120! Then make it a goal to add people in manageable numbers and start the process to them as well. Once you have your database filled, then your next goal can be to add a person for every day of the year. It’s really not hard when you get the hang of it.
Step two: Decide what to send. There are so many great services out there for sending personalized direct mail affordably and easily. There are also some terrific and fun email services that provide content for agents to send via email as well.
Some recommendations would be:
Step three: Commit to sending out something once a month for a whole year and do it. When you do you will be creating a habit that will grow your business in such a powerful way.
Step four: Follow up. You should be reaching out to every member of your sphere of influence at least twice per year. The direct mail or email you send will warm that call and make it easy for you to connect – not to SELL them on anything or pressure them to list, but to build that relationship with them and let them know you are a resource that is there for them WHENEVER they might need assistance.
Step five: Get out there! Meet fresh faces, make new contacts, and start building relationships with those new people so that they will soon know you, like you, and trust you enough to do business with them – that moves them from “prospect” to sphere of influence. Remember – you’re adding one per day – or 365 new people per year to your base!
Statistics tell us one in every twelve will refer business or do business with you themselves each year. That sounds like great motivation to me to build and maintain that list!
I’d love to hear your thoughts! Leave them here or find me on Facebook! Happy listing!
And Help Them Live Better Lives
By Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
It’s a busy world we live in. One with lots of moving parts, task lists, and responsibilities. It’s also filled with amazing opportunities and relationships. This month I wanted to share a few things that seem to set mentally strong people apart and help them live more joyously and successfully.
- They look at setbacks as catalysts for change. Even a big loss can become a defining moment to find creative solutions and set your sites on future wins.
- They start and end their days with gratitude. The Law of Attraction is a vital force – we get back what we most put into the world. Pay attention to, and keep your focus on, all the things you are grateful for each day, make a mental note of them and be thankful.
- They replace worry and fear with action. Fear and worry are two of the biggest obstacles to success. They shut down your mind’s ability to think creatively and find solutions. Instead, replace those emotions with action, propelling yourself to move forward.
- They’re mindful of their self-talk. The world has enough critics – don’t let the voice inside your head be your worst one. Fuel your inner dialogue with positive affirmation and be your own best advocate instead!
- They create a no-drama zone. It’s really, really easy in today’s world to get sucked into other people’s drama. From the blaring negative news in mainstream media to the Negative Neds around the office water cooler, it doesn’t take long before you are deluged with negative influences. Mentally strong people walk away. They shut it off, shut it down, and focus on the business at hand, the opportunities before them, and the blessings they are counting. Drama is a drain – do not participate.
- They have fun. The power of laughter makes you less susceptible to pain, releasing endorphins, exercising your body, and engaging your social brain. So many get caught up in the idea that they have to work 24/7 to be successful, but the truth is that life can’t be lived in a state of imbalance and why would anyone want it to?. Making fun and joy a priority allows you to lead a more balanced life, and it re-charges your “batteries” to help you handle whatever comes your way.
- They keep things in perspective. Problems seem daunting when you keep them so close you lose their perspective. The mentally strong know how to balance their focus so they can see things more clearly. They prioritize what needs to be done in the moment, but are adept at taking that step back so as to not lose sight of the big picture as well.
- They exercise. Our brains are a muscle and just like the rest of our muscles and as such, it requires exercise to perform optimally. Top achievers don’t shy away from challenges or stay stuck in the same old way of doing things. They continually look for new solutions, new methods, and new strategies. They are lifelong learners, fueling their minds with new ideas all the time so that when a problem does arise, they have the mental nimbleness to find the opportunities in the obstacles.
- They ask for help. I know there are a lot of proclaimed “self-made” men and women out there, but the truth is they don’t get that way flying solo on everything. There is SO much to learn from others, so many people who can lend their perspectives, insights, and knowledge that it’s absolutely the smartest thing to reach out and tap into those resources. And in return, let others tap into your ideas and knowledge as well. Mentors and protégés, coaches and coaching members, and mastermind groups are all amazing relationships to explore for those who want to always be mentally on top of their game and ready for anything. You know what they say, “If you’re the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room!” It’s true!
- They stay true to their core belief system. Most people have an internal compass that tells them when they are heading too far off their integrity level or core beliefs. It’s a grounding factor that sometimes takes some mental calisthenics, because it can be tempting to go for what’s easier, or faster, or seems like the quick dollar – but if it goes against who you are, and the things you most align yourself with, it will become a weight on your mind that will hold you back.
Challenge yourself to “work out” that magnificent mind you’ve been gifted with every day. These ten factors are a good place to start. I’d love to hear your thoughts as well! Share them here or find me on Facebook! Have a great week!
Measuring Success One Week at a Time
By America’s Six Figure Real Estate Coach
It’s said, “If you can measure it, you can manage it.” I’ve not been able to lock down the origin of the phrase, but the message is true enough. If you’re like a lot of folks, you ambitiously started the year with some big goals in mind. You may have even told the world, or at least your little corner of it, all about those goals. Are you ready to deliver? The first thing you need to ask yourself if you truly want to realize those aspirations is how are you going to measure where you are in relation to those goals every step of the way? Because here’s what happens to most people – the goals get lost in the shuffle. The day to day business of putting out fires and meeting deadlines and prospecting are so daunting and big that we take our eyes off our goals and head down the slippery slope that does not lead to reaching them.
What if, instead, you broke your goals down into weekly activities? That seems more manageable, right?
Let’s say you need 30 closings to hit your goal this year – what would you have to do every week to hit that goal? Block it out into measurable activities and milestones so that you can look at it every single week. That way, you’re never too far off track. Make it part of your weekly business routine to measure your results and tweak your business practices accordingly. Some agents prefer to do that at the end of a week, others like to plan ahead. Which works for you?
It’s important to be mindful of your time blocking as well so that on weeks where you might have fallen short of the goal mark, you can add in additional activity. On those weeks where you know you’ll be taking off for vacations or personal time, you can adjust the time before and after so that you’re always keenly aware of where you are in relation to the goals you’ve set. Next, add in some accountability. Some people are good at holding themselves accountable, but more often than not, it helps to have someone else to “answer to” as well. Accountability partnerships, mentors or coaches are all great for this. Have someone to bounce ideas off of, who can cheer you on when you are hitting your stride and help you focus and make adjustments when things might be a little off.
This month, I challenge you to create a measurement chart for your goals so that you are always on track for the success that you seek. If you haven’t already done so, it would be the perfect time to create a partnership with a trusted colleague with whom you can keep each other accountable for your actions and help put systems in place that will take you where you both want to be in this business.
If you need help, let me know. Helping agents do more in less time, with less stress is one of my favorite things about being a coach. Shoot me a message from my website or at admin@SixFigureRealEstateCoach.com. We can determine if coaching is the right thing for you.
First, Second, and Every Impression
By Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
Every day you have an opportunity to make not just a good impression but a great one. From your attitude to your branding, your business acumen to your intention – every interaction you have with others affects your reputation and the integrity level you show to the world. At this time of year, many entrepreneurs are already looking at their business planning to design the path to help them reach and even exceed their goals in the coming year. Be sure to take the time to examine what message you are sending in all that you do.
Here are some questions to ask yourself and things to keep on your radar:
- Business relationships. Are you known as someone easy to work with? A competitor – but one who is respectful, professional, and fair? Do you treat referrals (and the people doing the referring) like VIPs? Are all of your transactions honest and above board? Developing and nurturing strong, respectful relationships with your fellow agents and entrepreneurs will mean the difference between continued referrals, respect amongst peers, and a solid reputation in your market.
- Customer/Client relationships. Are you staying in touch with your sphere of influence in some way every month? When was the last time you reached out to your past customers either by phone or in person? Do you have a solid database that includes all your past and current customers and when was the last time you updated it? Staying top of mind with the folks that already have liked and trusted you enough to do business with you is one of the best things you can do to earn repeat business and referrals. Instead of always chasing NEW customers – consider taking excellent care of the ones you already have.
- Manners matter. In a world where everyone seems to be staring at their smartphones 24/7 – do you put yours away when engaged in a conversation with someone? Are you present in that conversation, actively listening and engaging in what is being said? Are you making eye contact and making the other person feel as if they are important? Do you remember to say please and thank you? Both personally and professionally, presenting yourself as someone who is well-mannered and personable is NOT old fashioned, it’s a smart and powerful way to cultivate great relationships.
- Timeliness vs. tardiness. Not to get old school again, but being late in today’s world still stings of unprofessionalism and lack of respect for the other parties concerned. Do you make it a point to always be on time or even a few minutes early for appointments? Do you honor a time commitment when you make it? Show you care enough to be on time.
Whether you are meeting someone for the first time, or the 101st time, be sure when you step into your day that you are putting your best self forward. It is the mark of a good salesperson, and a common denominator amongst top producers.
It Might Be Worth the Try
By America’s Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
Here’s a powerful thought shared by Seth Godin recently, “If something scares you, it might be a good thing to try.” I love this. Not that I want to promote fear in any way – quite the opposite in fact. But what I do want my coaching and audience members to do is to S-T-R-E-T-C-H themselves. To toss aside all those ‘that’s the way it’s always been’ mindsets and practices and try some new things on for size. New ideas. New technology. New strategies. Practices. Tools. Dialogues. Mindsets.
Comfort zones can be dangerous places because they don’t allow us to grow. And let’s face it – if you’re not growing, you’re actually going backwards, because the world we live in is spinning faster and faster it seems, and getting smaller and smaller as well thanks to the availability of learning and connecting 24/7.
What can you do to break out without TOO much additional stress?
- Pick a new niche. Something you’re passionate about. Something that you can’t wait to fuel each day.
- Commit to adding one new person to your sphere each day. In a year’s time you’ll have added 365 new people!
- Join a networking group. There’s SO much opportunity in these groups. Opportunity to learn from and connect with a lot of people. Sometimes the toughest thing is to take that first step and join in. After that, there will be no stopping you.
- Up the ante. Take your current goals and stretch them a little. Make them attainable – but with a stretch. Stop going for the slam dunks. Step it up! Expect more and you will attract more!
- Take your skills to the next level. Register for a training course or coaching or a combination and take those skills to the next level. The best agents aren’t the best because they are resting on their laurels – they are constantly improving their knowledge and skills.
Our lives expand in direct proportion to the work and energy we put into it. So stop sitting on the sidelines, resting on past successes or sitting in comfort zones that foster complacency. Get up. Get out there. Bring your best self to the table each day and exercise your ability to grow in new and exciting ways.
I’d love to hear your thoughts – and what ‘scary’ thing you want to try in the New Year. Share them with me here or on my Facebook page at www.facebook.com/6FigureRealEstateCoach! To your success!
Try a New Perspective!
By Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
Branding. It’s a buzzword that seems to be everywhere we turn these days. And it’s no doubt an important part of your business. But branding by ITSELF is not really effective. One of the biggest errors agents make is they rush to develop branding that feeds their EGO but not their business. Here’s what I mean. Ever see those branding packages that are high gloss, have the agent’s picture larger than life, and the copy is all about how WONDERFUL the agent is, right down almost to their grade school award for perfect attendance? (All right, that last part is an exaggeration – but you get the picture.)
While that looks great, and it makes an agent feel pumped up and excited about their cool new marketing materials – what it DOESN’T do is tune into the WIIFM (What’s In It For Me) channel that today’s sellers and buyers are tapped into. Frankly – they don’t care if you had perfect attendance – or much else about YOU other than what you can do for THEM. In order to do that, you need to know what’s IMPORTANT to THEM. Or as I like to call it, you need CLARITY.
Before you dive headlong into the fall market for even a minute more, take some time to really think about WHO you want to work with. Are they move-up marketing candidates? Are they seniors? Are they golfers? Boaters? Horse breeders? Harley owners? A hybrid of a few? Get CLEAR on who your I.C., or your Ideal Client is.
Next…What are their hot buttons? Where can you find them? How can you position yourself as THEIR expert? What do they want from a real estate professional? Why are you a good fit for them? Ask yourself these questions and get the answers crystal clear in your mind. THEN wrap your branding and marketing around those things and you’ll discover that you’ll find their hands raise a whole lot faster – and you’ll be a whole lot happier. Why? Because you’ll be working with the people you WANT to work with – and that just makes life exponentially better, don’t you think?
Here’s to clarity! And here’s to you! Watch this quick clip for more on why clarity is a key to your success…
I’d love to hear your thoughts! Leave them below – and happy listing this season!
Seth Godin, one of my favorite bloggers, reminded me of something in his latest blog. That is, an agent's real estate business is a living, breathing thing. Developing an intimate relationship with it, like one would with their garden, is what makes it grow, makes it sustainable, and a truly meaningful for all involved. While it's important to have systems in place to run it like a business, it doesn't mean that it needs to be treated like a machine. In today's hectic world, people complain of being treated like "prospects" or "contacts" rather than human beings. In an effort to build your business, have you (like so many) forgotten that you sphere of influence is not really a list, but rather an living, breathing, ever-changing entity comprised of people that prefer individualized care and attention to yield the greatest results?
I'll share Seth's blog below.
Gardens, not buildings
It works or it doesn't.
Build something that doesn't fall down. On time.
But in fact, great projects, like great careers and relationships that last, are gardens. They are tended, they shift, they grow. They endure over time, gaining a personality and reflecting their environment. When something dies or fades away, we prune, replant and grow again.
Perfection and polish aren't nearly as important as good light, good drainage and a passionate gardener.
By all means, build. But don't finish. Don't walk away.
Here we grow.
Posted by Seth Godin on July 29, 2013