If you find yourself feeling that you aren’t where you need to be in your business, I have some great ideas to help you take action and get you moving forward. The key to mastering any business or even sport is to keep taking the action you need to improve. Many real estate agents get stuck and stop making progress because when they don’t see immediate results. However, if you focus on the action rather than the results, the results will come.
Here are 10 ideas to jumpstart your business with action:
1. Send every one of your past clients something about the current real estate market. A mail piece or report that is well thought out and that educates your clients on what is going on in their local market is a great way to connect. Past clients are a wonderful source of referrals and past business, however, a small percentage of clients use their agents again due to a lack of “connection” (which is another way of saying that you forgot to keep in touch with them). This data base of clients is your “gold mine” and you need to take care of them. When you need to increase your business, put together a mailer which includes quality, relevant information. Follow up with them to make sure they received it and to see if they have any questions.
2. Focus on connecting with people and being present in public. Real estate is a people business where success depends greatly on your ability to make connections with people. As an agent you need to stay in the forefront so potential clients can see you and get to know you before they hire you. Make a plan for the year highlighting the events you will be attending so you can connect with people and get energy from these connections. Real estate is a business that requires you to be “out there” either in person or in print. And if you are a person that would rather get connected through print then you need to have a monthly plan of regular mailers that go out. Staying top of mind is critical when you are trying to boost your business.
3. Focus on connecting with your loved ones and being present at home. No amount of success in your business will make up for failure at home. Over the years I have worked with many real estate agents that have expressed their regret about not being present at home. The pressures and stress from the business seem to follow them and they often can’t seem to leave it at the door when they get home. This causes them to be grumpy and distant and not truly focused on their family. Put down your work troubles, leave them at the door and engage and connect with the most important people in your world. This will give you a boost that will energize your business. Feeling good about your home life is critical to a successful business.
4. Review your production numbers from the last six months and set realistic goals for the coming year. Keeping track of your numbers is essential for your success. You can’t effectively plan ahead if you don’t know exactly where you have been. Many real estate agents don’t look at their numbers monthly which is an excellent practice but if you find it difficult to do this then at least review them annually and make a plan from the information you discovered.
5. Focus on getting one business project done every month. Every real estate agent I have ever worked with has a list of unfinished projects. That is the nature of our business. I encourage agents to make a list of all the one-time tasks or projects that they want to complete in their business. Once this list is complete I ask them to organize their projects by priority and then assign one task per month and to commit to getting that done. This is a great way to get a lot of projects completed in a slow and steady manner. Slow and steady wins the race when running a real estate business.
6. Take a look at your physical spaces and determine what is working and what is not. Your physical surroundings are critical to you being able to complete tasks and work efficiently. If your office space is cluttered it is hard to work at your best level. When agents are able to purge and clean their “out of control” office it gives them a sense of relief which can be monumental in helping them jumpstart their year.
7. Determine a new rule for working with buyers and sellers and put the processes in place to be able to live by that rule. Most of the agents I work with tell me that they waste a lot of time tending to last minute emergencies that could have been prevented because they were not really emergencies and they didn’t have any rules for working with clients. Look back at the past year and ask yourself what situations caused you the most time to resolve. Ask yourself if there are new processes that you need to implement to prevent your time being robbed from you. Think about all the situations that have caused you stress because of lack of rules and then create some “what to do if” rules when these scenarios come up. Anything you can do to save your time is essential for helping you to preserve your time.
8. Determine a new rule for working with outside vendors. Every time you take a call from a sales person trying to sell you another online lead generation tool you are taking time away from the foundational tasks that can make or break your business (and possibly cash if you make a purchase). You need to preserve your time and ask vendors to first send you information in writing about their products or services. You don’t have time for a sales pitch for a product or service you will never utilize in your business. You don’t have to say yes all the time. Instead preserve your greatest asset – your time.
9. Plan your vacations and days off for the coming year now. Look back to last year and ask yourself if you were happy with the amount of time you took off. If you weren’t then now is the perfect time to make a pledge to take the time you want this year. Real estate agents that can take time off on a regular basis allow their mind and body to get the much-needed rest craved. If you don’t plan now there is a very good chance the year will pass you by and you will not have taken enough time off. Agents that regularly take time are better rested and rejuvenated for their business.
10. Edit, edit, edit. This is by far the MOST important thing you can do for your business. Editing out of your business and life all the things that are not serving you well is essential in today’s very fast-paced world. Perhaps you need to edit the amount of time you are spending online or checking your emails. A possible solution is unsubscribing to emails from companies that you aren’t going to be working with or don’t grow your business. Editing out non-productive activities that require too much of your energy without a positive result is critical to the overall health of you and your business.
Take the time to really take a close look at your business and life and choose an idea or two from the list above to boost your business. And take action!