There is nothing moderate about our new projects. We either only see stardom and fulfilment of all our wishes or think that all is lost. In general, we are not well suited to calculate probabilities of outcomes in our heads. There are all sorts of biases we hold and they skew our thinking to help us paint extreme pictures of the outcomes. I want to focus on a number os issues related to why most real estate agents fail. I will also give you a few thoughts on what you can do minimize the risk of not succeeding in this business.
As a starting problem, most new agents don’t have the business experience to fall back on. Even more importantly, most agents build dreamy projections in their minds, not bothering to put their thoughts on paper. The first physical manifestation of your plans is writing them down on a piece of paper. This is the first step in sometimes a very long journey.
What is a sales process and do you understand it? As you are going through paces of getting your real estate license, you are taking a lot of courses. They give you the foundation necessary to handle real estate transactions once you have clients. They don’t teach you though, how to get clients, so you could handle these imaginary transactions. We will try as we might, we are ready to transact, but there is nothing coming in and we simply don’t know what to do to change that. The issue is particularly severe if you are starting in a flat of declining market. It is unforgiving.
In a market that is going up, there will be a few transactions that will land on your lap. This could sustain you while you are gaining experience and educating yourself on what to do. In a flat of declining market you have no such luxury and have to start following a proven system from day one. Your best bet would be to start with a brokerage where your broker/manager can give you guidance on what system to follow. Alternatively or in addition to, you can join an external coaching program that will teach you the ropes of how to get clients. Flying by the seat of your pants is a bad idea, unless you are aiming to become a failed statistic.
Self-development. Watching cute cat videos on Youtube is not self-development. You can find anything on the web and this is a great source to start with, but you have to know what to look for and not get distracted. Doing the initial research on the internet will give you a general direction quickly, but to really understand the subject, you need to go to other sources and make yourself practice what you learn. I suggest you allocate about 2 weeks per year for immersive events. A few multi-day seminars would be a good idea.
You also have to now your field. Study the monthly market reports, read the information provided on the National Association of Realtors website (https://www.nar.realtor/topics), watch coaches and other realtors on Youtube. Self-development is something you schedule and follow. It does not matter if you have just started in the business or have been at it for 20 years.
Reading is a part of the self-development topic, however I wanted to give it a separate paragraph. It is that important. I suggest you mix books you read with audiobooks you listen to. If you are driving or at a gym, you can’t read. This is when audiobooks are handy. Try to read or listen to 3 to 4 books a month. Make notes. If the book is not casual reading, study the material and your notes as if you study for a test after a university lecture.
Planning is a key component of your success in the business. You have to have a solid plan for the year. This is step one. Step two is to follow the plan. It is that simple. Your plan will not only include your goals, whether they are near or far, but also a roadmap to who you need to become to hit your objectives. I suggest to have a specific time, allocated for reading and studying. I do this in the morning and in the evening. It is a part of my morning and shutting off for the day routines and I stick to reading for 45 minutes to an hour. I also listen to audio books when I am not at home.
Discipline is something you develop over time. Start executing whatever is on your calendar, especially appointments with yourself, as if your life depended on it. Practice getting up at the same time, or at least do this more often than not, and establish a routine that you follow every morning. When you are trying to form a single, new and reliable habit, you are stacking up your deck on your lazy, unorganized self. Once you turn an idea (or a resolution) into a habit, it becomes an automatic activity.
When you are starting something new, set the objectives that are so easy, that you would be ashamed not to do them. For example, if you are thinking about forming a habit to meditate daily, what is the optimal length of time you allocate for this? You will know from your research that 30 to 40 minutes would be optimal for a single session. Can you start with that? If you do, you will likely suffer through this once, never to come back again. Start with a single minute. After you are done, you should be left feeling that this was so easy that you can and want to do more. Don’t give in to the temptation of doing more today. Make it “painful” to not continue and stick to the pathetic and unsatisfying 1 minute routine for at least a week. Then increase it to 2 minutes, then 5 etc. Over the next 3 to 6 months you will build the stamina to do this for 30 to 40 minutes and what’s most important, this will become your new habit.
Inability to handle rejection is a problem that most of us have. Rejection is a bitter pill. There is no fast remedy for this. It takes a lot of forcing yourself to pick up the phone daily and to call. Over time this too will become a habit and you will no longer sweat when leads are saying no to you. Just stick with it.
Practice your scripts and use them. This is so important and ties in with the previous point. If you don’t have scripts that you follow, you are unlikely to improve.
Not knowing where you are now. Keep track of your numbers every day, week, month, quarter and the year. You have to know where you are and where you are going. Keep track of your activities and compare them to what you have planned. Take corrective actions, if you fall behind. Your plan is the blueprint for the year and knowing where you are is your starting point.