Here’s a challenge for you… what’s holding you back from greater accomplishments in your real estate sales career? What are you resisting right now? What is it that you are consistently putting on the back burner that if you dealt with it would make a huge difference in your life and your sales business working with home sellers and home buyers? Think about the following anonymous quote…“What we need the most… we resist the most”.
This blog is all about helping you answer that question…and more importantly, doing something about it! When you take 100% responsibility for your future and your real estate sales results, amazing things happen. It’s never too late to make a change – it’s never too late to impact who you are being.
In 1888 Swedish chemist Alfred Nobel was reading the morning paper and saw his own obituary staring him in the face. That would wake you up, wouldn’t it! Here’s what had happened… his brother Ludwig Nobel had passed away but a French newspaper mistakenly thought it was Alfred who had died. They printed his obituary instead!
Alfred was an armaments manufacturer and the inventor of dynamite. He was extremely successful and very wealthy. For his accomplishments the premature obituary named him the “merchant of death”. The paper was holding Alfred responsible for mass destruction and blaming him for escalating war and the deaths of hundreds of thousands of men. There is no doubt that the invention of dynamite had contributed hugely to that eventuality.
As Alfred read his own obituary he was shocked at the legacy he actually would leave behind one day. He vowed then and there to change it and in effect rewrite his own obituary. So he decided to do something about it. He decided to leave the bulk of his enormous fortune to establish the now famous Nobel Prizes.
As a result of the untimely obituary and Alfred’s subsequent decision, amazing things happened…well over 100 years later people all over the world are still being honored every year for providing huge benefits to mankind. To this day the Nobel prizes are the highest honors that can be attained in the fields of literature, medicine, physics, economics, chemistry and peace. Alfred Nobel changed who he was being and as Steve Jobs would say, “Made a huge dent in the universe”.
It’s an amazing story and I’m not asking you to write your own obituary right now. It’s too soon for that just yet, don’t you think?!!! I just want you to ask yourself this question…”Am I being who I really want to be right now? Am I content with the way things are going and the legacy I am leaving?” For sure, there’s a lot more within you that you can accomplish before you are done, the same way Alfred Nobel did.
Whatever is getting in the way of you operating at a higher level, you can be sure it is the result of the power you give it. It’s resistance that prevents the greater things you aspire towards.
There is a Conflict
Think of it this way… when you are resisting doing something… something that you know will ultimately be a benefit to you, an asset… you are really in the midst of a conflict within yourself.
This conflict says “I know I should get on with this BUT… “ and then you run into a roadblock. The problem is that as long as your resistance wins out, as long as that BUT has power… you aren’t moving forward.
Management consultant and author Patrick M. Lencioni is an expert on Conflict. He has written numerous books about leadership and dealing with conflict. Listen to this quote and see how it applies to you…
“The only thing worse than engaging in conflict is not to do so… sometimes it’s necessary and should not be avoided”. Lencioni went on to say that… “By avoiding conflict you are putting the short-term benefit of comfort ahead of the long-term goals of your business and your life… this is a mistake”.
So today’s blog on “What are you Resisting?” is all about addressing that “short-term benefit of comfort” versus your long-term goals. Today we’re going to step up to the plate and eliminate that self-defeating approach. This conflict, these resistances are what are getting in the way of who you are really capable of being. This change will create some amazing reversals in your business of helping people buy and sell homes, your life and your all important confidence level…
So to get started… let me ask you again… what are you resisting… what are you avoiding or putting off that you know if you step up to will make a huge difference? As a result of all the Real Estate Sales Coaching and Sales Training I have done, I have compiled a list of the many items I see people resisting every day.
Let’s start with the all-important one of Building Your Real Estate Sales Business… the items we’re going to go through aren’t in any particular order… but as you will soon see there’s plenty of them… what I want you to do today is to use this overview as a reminder of the things you know want to step up to and stop resisting.
For sure, when you stop resisting then you will start expanding on who you are… you will open the doors to an even better future…to who you are REALLY capable of being.
They all won’t apply to everyone… use this overview like a “buffet”… choose the ones you know will make the biggest difference for you and move forward by stepping up to them one by one.
BUILDING YOUR REAL ESTATE SALES BUSINESS… the first resistance is:
- Resisting Asking for Home Buyer and Seller Referrals …s
This is the one that separates the highly successful from the average real estate Salesperson. Just because your sales prospects, your home buyers and sellers, and your existing clients know who you are and what you do for a living doesn’t mean they are thinking of you 24 hours a day. As a real estate Salesperson you already know that the average homeowner moves every seven years. What many Salespeople overlook though is that these same home owners run into 6 – 7 people every year who are contemplating a move.
The odds are dramatically MORE in the favor of you receiving a referral “to help my friend buy a home rather than come on over and help us sell our home”. That’s why it’s so important to keep reminding your past clients and centers of influence that you’re ready for their referrals…
Get good at asking this question… “As you know I’m always looking for more people to help in real estate… I was wondering, who do you know that needs my help to buy or sell a home this year”.
You can casually and very naturally ask for referrals every time the opportunity presents itself. You are not being pushy, you are not being salesy, and you are not compromising your relationship with people. You are simply doing your job. People expect you to ask.
Consider how committed you are to doing a great job for everyone you support. By not asking… you are doing them a disservice! When you resist asking for referrals then chances are the new home buyer or seller prospect will end up with someone who’s not going to provide them with nearly the quality of service and skill level that you offer.
- Resisting Making Phone Calls from Your Car…
When you’re driving from sales appointment to sales appointment with your buyers and sellers, you are still “on the job”. Why not take a few of those follow-up calls and prospecting opportunities with you so you can fill in this otherwise wasted time with productive work?
Create a simple file in your office called “Car Calls”. Every once in a while just put the name and phone number in this file of someone you’ve been trying to reach. This could be old and new seller leads, old and new buyer leads, returning calls, and the all-important past clients and centers of influence. Use your time wisely, it’s all part of the “work all the time that you work” approach.
- Resisting Following a Daily Schedule…
Real estate Salespeople who follow a daily schedule get more done than those who are always responding to everyone else’s needs. There’s a reason why your dentist gives you a specific time slot for your next cleaning. Otherwise their waiting room would be chaos and they wouldn’t be able to help nearly as many patients. Running a busy real estate sales practice works the same way. Following a daily schedule is a critical part of being productive.
Planned activity and scheduling things in specific time slots will allow you to get a lot more done and sell more homes than if you are always in “react mode”.
Most of the time, following a daily schedule sometimes isn’t as entertaining as doing things spontaneously. On the other hand, following a schedule is a lot more productive (and you will learn more commissions).
The simplest solution is to differentiate between your real estate sales business and your personal life. Start with a daily schedule for business. Save the spontaneity for your personal life, that’s where it belongs and you do deserve that. Just keep the two separate.
- Resisting Adhering to a Planned Lead Follow-Up System…
One of the most common flaws exhibited by real estate Salespeople is inconsistent follow-up with the existing home buyer and home seller leads they’ve already generated. This is very unfortunate when you consider the amount of effort it took to create these hot leads in the first place. Rather than focus on why this is the case, let’s focus on how to deal with it…
Set-aside ½ hour every day in your schedule to call your buyer and seller leads and ask for business. Don’t wait for them to call you first. Someone else might beat you to it!
The previous point was all about setting up a daily schedule and sticking to it. Lead follow-up is a critical aspect of your daily schedule. From personal experience when I was selling real estate, I would suggest there are three particular timeslots you could put lead follow-up in your schedule.
- i) First thing in the morning before you start your regular lead generation.
- ii) Around noon after you have finished your prospecting.
iii) And lastly, near the end of the day when your home sellers and buyers are getting home.
Keep a HOT lead file with you at all times and follow-up regularly and consistently. Remember… real estate Salespeople typically lose more business as a result of not following up often enough. Over calling never seems to be the problem. Be your word and call all your hot sales leads exactly on the day you said you were going to.
- Resisting Pursuing Rejection…
Everyone knows that the more rejection you receive, the more results you generate. There is definite truth in the wisdom that says “generating leads and identifying people who want to buy or sell a home is A NUMBERS GAME”.
The real estate Salesperson who talks to 15 sales prospects a day is always going to receive more rejection than the individual who only talks to 5 sales prospects a day. The simple reality of course is that they will also do considerably more business! More contacts = more rejection. More rejection = more business.
Handling rejection, shrugging it off, and moving on “comes with the territory”. Learn to say NEXT! every time. As legendary NFL Coach Vince Lombardi said, “It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s not whether you get up, it’s how fast you get up!”. Getting up faster does take mental toughness.
One of the best ways to call on your mental toughness is to refer back to your personal goals. Keep reminding yourself of the big picture and why you are going through these periodic struggles. It’s a great way to get past the “bumps in the road”.
- Resisting Revising Your Listing Presentation….
With the rate of change of technology, your marketplace, and your competition… you should be revising and updating your Listing Presentation every six months. It doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with the way it is right now, it just means it could be better. Don’t rely on “status quo” to help you sign that listing every time.
Your potential home seller only gets to see your Listing Presentation once. Remember, when you are making a listing presentation, “It’s Showtime”. Should you change what you say to be more compelling? Should you change what you show them? Check out a digital version to really raise the bar – the Plug-And-Play LP Listing Presentation Package.
The people who have already bought and sold homes with you are your best allies. They know, like, and trust you. Just because you haven’t called them for a few months doesn’t mean you shouldn’t call them now and touch base. If you’re a bit hesitant because of the time lag, just say…
“We haven’t talked in a while and I just wanted to call and see how you’re doing. How’s everything going?” Don’t worry, they’re not keeping track of how long it’s been.
The critical issue is this… don’t make the mistake of assuming they’re going to use you next time around if you don’t stay in touch personally. There’s an expression that says… “home buyers and sellers do business with the last realtor they talked to”.
Make sure you are the last real estate agent they connected with. It’s a good opportunity to get back in touch, answer any questions, re-position yourself as the neighborhood real estate expert, and of course… ask for referrals.
One final point of reassurance for you… your past clients and centers of influence are almost always very happy to hear from you. Many of my real estate sales Coaching Clients often remark… “You know Bruce, it was fun reconnecting with those 8 past clients I called the other day. They were happy to hear from me and we had great conversations”.
- Resisting Expanding Your Lead Generation Targets…
If you’re not happy with the number of homes you are selling, one option is to go after new targets. Don’t worry, you can’t cover them all right from the start. Whatever reason you have been telling yourself that “I’d rather not call these folks” is invalid. Maybe it’s time to branch out.
One of the best ways to change your real estate sales results is to expand your target audience. You can start by contacting a real estate market niche that you haven’t gone after before. (FSBO, expired, old expired, absentee owner, rentors, business associates, Internet leads, networking groups, etc.).
Some of your competition have been contacting this same group for a long time. Why not you? Just pick one and develop your skills to help them accomplish their goals. You don’t have to master them all at once, just pick one and get started.
This is part of my “build the plane while you fly it” approach. Learn while you go. Find out what types of real estate sales objections you are going to receive and then start mastering the objection handlers and sales closing techniques to take your business to the next level. Growth is fun, it keeps your real estate sales business interesting and because you’re never standing still – your sales results are growing with you.
- Resisting Cleaning up Your Old Leads…
Hanging on to old real estate sales leads is like being “a hoarder”. Some Salespeople use them as a comfort thinking that somehow this pile of aging opportunities is going to all of a sudden become valuable.
They think that “there just may be some one or two deals in there”. That’s probably true. The problem is that the bad home buyer and seller leads hide the good ones. It’s important to separate the two. Clean out “your closet” and get rid of the ones who are not in need of your services right now.
Call them all up and ask these two quick questions…
- “Did you ever… buy a home/sell your home?”
If NO then ask:
- “Let’s get together for 15 minutes and discuss your options. I have some ideas that may help you”.
Take a position that there is no middle ground here… they are either good home buyer or seller leads or they are not. Don’t be “a hoarder”. There is no advantage to hanging on to clutter. It doesn’t mean you throw them away, just take them out of your hot lead files. Put them in a file for longer-term sales leads. That way you can focus on the people that really need you. Keep them in your database for future follow-up and possible sales referrals.
- Resisting Adding One Name Each Day to Your Database…
Here’s an exciting fact that you can “take to the bank”. Typically you can expect a minimum of a 10% return per year from your database. This means if you have 100 names on your list and you follow-up with them regularly, you can expect 10 additional home buyer or seller transactions in the next 12 months (repeat business or referrals). The key is that you must stay in touch with them personally every 90 days.
Here’s the best part, for every 10 new names you add to your list, you can anticipate one more transaction in the next 12 months!
How to build your list? Two main sources…
#1. Add everyone to your database that you know personally
#2. Add everyone with whom you have a comfortable conversation during your regular prospecting activity. It does not necessarily mean that they are moving. Don’t forget, they can always send you business because you are going to stay in touch every 90 days.
Set this rule for yourself…have a minimum standard to add one person per day to your list. Choose a good CRM to manage your list. Here’s a good option – Check out IXACT Contact.
- Resisting Tracking Your Numbers Daily, Weekly, Monthly…
To put it bluntly… “trackers win, guessers lose”. If you were driving from Toronto to Boston, don’t you think you would check the map periodically to make sure you were still headed in the right direction? If you found you were off-track, you could make an adjustment along the way.
It’s the same for your real estate sales business. You need to know where you stand in your business at least on a monthly basis compared to where you want to end up at the end of your business cycle. Looking at your results every week will raise your awareness dramatically.
Make sure you keep it simple – just track the most important items. A minimum standard for tracking would be to always know your sales results for the following 5 categories…
- listing appointments
- listings taken
- listings sold
- buyer sales
- closings/commissions earned
Post your ongoing results on the wall in your office, use a whiteboard or a large sheet of paper. Keep it up-to-date to remind you of where you are at all times. If you get off track, you’ll know quickly enough to make adjustments before you “end up in the ditch”.
Here’s a great read for creating a simple system to “get it done”. “The 4 Disciplines of Execution” by Chris McChesney and Sean Covey.
- Resisting Using Video to Enhance Your Communication…
NAR advises that while 85% of home buyers and home sellers would prefer to deal with a real estate Salesperson who uses video, only 15% actually do so. That’s a huge gap! It also creates a great opportunity.
I have found that the “open rate” for the high volume of e-mails we send out to all our clients in our real estate sales trained business increases by approximately 50% when I include video in the content. You can expect the same return on investment. You’ll get much better results and people will pay more attention to what you have to say.
If you want to separate yourself from the competition start using video to communicate with your past clients and centers of influence database and on social media. Very effective (and don’t forget the social media part – this is becoming more and more productive every day!). It’s easy to do and once you practice it a couple of times it doesn’t need to be intimidating at all.
One company that makes it very easy to get started is www.BombBomb.com.
- Resisting Closing 3 – 5 Times…
Everyone knows you should close more than once. The resistance that shows up most frequently is that “I don’t want to be pushy” or “I don’t want to irritate them – they might get annoyed and stop working with me”.
This fear is only valid if you lose the all-important conversational aspect of closing for the signature or closing for the sale naturally. This isn’t about changing your personality and pounding the table expecting your home buyer or home seller to sign the agreement. Quite the opposite…look at this solution…
Here is the modern way to close…Pick your top 3 favorite natural closes and use them over and over. Here’s some examples of natural real estate sales closes:
“Mrs. Seller…Shall we get the paperwork started?”
“Are you folks ready to move forward?”
“Mr. Home Buyer…We probably should get together, is today or tomorrow better?”
You can make up your own list of natural real estate sales closes.
Taking this approach will not only sound much more conversational, it will also allow you to close more often in a comfortable way. Remember that 80% of all real estate sales closes are successful only after the 3rd attempt. Avoid falling into the trap of closing only once or twice. Doing so is setting up your home buyer or home seller prospect for a competitor to come along and reap the benefits of your hard work. Complete the cycle yourself.
Not asking for the signature and expecting your prospect to say yes voluntarily is a mistake. It’s your job to help them “cross the finish line”.
- Resisting Taking on Tough Accountability…
The most common request I receive from prospective real estate sales Coaching Clients is that “I want to be held accountable, Bruce – make sure I do the things I need to do.” It’s a very legitimate request and it’s certainly part of what we deliver in our Real Estate Sales Coaching Programs. The problem is that while being held accountable is a very honest intention, when reality hits, many real estate Salespeople resist this very same accountability.
You have to be prepared to go all the way when you ask for accountability.
Here’s why taking on tough accountability is such a great contributor to helping you sell more homes. There is no doubt that everyone can do more than they typically put out on a day-to-day basis.
Just think of when you go to the gym and exercise. When you have a Personal Trainer standing over you exhorting you to do “2 more push-ups” it’s amazing how your inner strength shows up. The same is true in your real estate sales business. For example…
— making 5 more contacts each day in your prospecting
— learning one more buyer or seller objection handler
— sticking to your schedule without interruption… mastering Time Management.
Hire a Real Estate Sales Coach. These are all items that strong external accountability can make happen. Stop trying to do it on your own… as the expression goes, “If you could do it yourself you would have done it already”. Have the courage to take on some strong accountability, it pays for itself many times over.
Here’s a minimum standard you should expect when you hire a Sales Coach – this is what happens for our Coaching Clients…
Expect a five times return on your money. For every $1000 you spend, you should generate $5000 more in revenue. Check it out.
Leave a comment below. Which 2 – 3 of the above items in this first list really “hit a nerve” for you? What’s the first one you’re going to deal with… and how?