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Where Should you Work?

As I have been working in real estate, I have gotten some offers to join other companies.  I have had 2 companies I have never heard of reach out by email and ask if I might be interested in looking into their companies.  I have had a real estate agent ask me if I was interested in being a buyer’s agent for her.  I have also had an upscale real estate firm dangle an offer for me to work at their office which is smack in the middle of a city I am farming heavily.  This company would have been ideal because of the location, training from an extremely high level producer and the introduction into selling high-end homes.  I have to admit, the last offer had me tempted to jump ship where I was at.

What is interesting is that I have only been in the business since July.  I have seen my career start to gain some speed, but let’s face it, I am brand spanking new.  Really too new to make an educated decision on what is best for me and my career at this time.

Although these offers have been flattering, the practice of grabbing up agents from other companies as I have come to find out is nothing new.  Several agents in my office have been asked to join other companies.  In the end, we all stayed.

I was in the office the other day, mulling over the last offer.  As I walked around the office gathering paperwork for some appointments I had over the weekend, I really paid attention to the environment I was in.  The people I work with are all incredibly friendly.  I feel close to many of the other agents.  Lets face it, no matter where you work, being able to enjoy the company of your fellow employees is a big deal.

I had some questions for the manager about the way some paperwork was written up.  She was more than happy to put everything aside and answer my questions.  She is always incredibly enthusiastic and wonderful to go to when you are unsure of something.

I had an agent who was busy and offered me a listing they didn’t have time to work on.  All in all, it felt like home.  I have carved out a nice place to build my business.  I work with great people, the atmosphere is laid back and positive.  I would be crazy to leave a place that makes me happy when I walk through the door.

There will always be time to look into what might be a bigger and better opportunity later once I am able to go about my business without doubts or questions.  If I work at my business and really put my heart and soul into accomplishing success in this career, I should have the opportunity to go after the business I desire without the jolt of moving to another company.

I’m bringing all of this up because as a new realtor, if you are doing well, the offers will start to come in to jump ship.  Before letting your ego run your decision for you, take a step back and look at what you have created.  Are you happy when you walk into your office?  Are the resources you need to succeed there at your fingertips?  Do you have the support of management when you are unsure of something you are working on?  Do your fellow employees treat each other well and work as a team instead of running each other over?  I was able to answer yes to all of these questions.  I am happy to have had choices, but I know the best choice for me is to stay squarely where I am at.

I hope this article is helpful to you as you continue to navigate your own real estate career. 🙂

 
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Posted by on November 3, 2012 in advice, benefit, career

 

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Embracing Your Personal Style

I feel like agents at my office are often times on similar wavelengths.  This last week I had some similar conversations with a few different agents.  What made the experience unusual was that the subjects were brought up to me in the course of the conversation by the other person.  You know that feeling where you say, “that’s so funny, I just had that same conversation with so and so.”  Yeah, that was me last week.

As some of the newer realtors are becoming more comfortable, me included, the subject of selling style has come up.  I love the different types of people who work at my office.  The personalities are fabulous.  There are boisterous, outgoing types of agents.  I know some laid back go with the flow never rattled types.  There are the magnetic personalities of the polished professional and so on.

I love that as a new agent there are opportunities to learn about different ways of going after business.  It’s always fortunate to be in a position to learn ways of doing business that have never occurred to you.  Unfortunately, I think that sometimes people can have a very narrow focus on what does and does not fit as a selling tool for each individual person.

Everyone is different.  I personally embrace this concept and I’m grateful to know this to be true.  If not, I would be dreadfully bored by the sameness in each person.  As different as each person is, so to is their style of approaching their career as a real estate agent.  Look there is no one size fits all method.  The wise person is aware of this.  They are the ones that are open-minded to different techniques, try them out, and then settle into the fit that is most comfortable and authentic to them.  You need to be true to yourself by maintaining your personal integrity and the way you are comfortable doing business.  You should want to be proud to announce that you are a real estate agent.  If you can’t find your rhythm and personal style, you will come across as artificial and cold.  People respond to truth, values and care.  When you are able to find a way to do business that maintains those abilities, you will find success.  Authenticity is everything.

So my advice is to find your personal style.  That style that says this is who I am and this is how I lead my life. I do believe that you will be happier for it.  I also believe that you will attract like-minded individuals who appreciate your style.  This is a win-win situation in that you will enjoy what you are doing, how you approach your career and will get enjoyment from the people who are attracted to your style.

 
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Posted by on September 25, 2012 in advice, career, lifestyle, opinion, people, style

 

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A New Plan of Action

I have been going through a training program at work.  The idea behind the program is to get you acclimated with the various ways you can drum up some business.  A quick overview of the plan goes something like this:

In a given week, pick from this list and prospect off of it for the week.

1.  FSBO (for sale by owner)
2.  Short Sales
3.  Foreclosures
4.  Expired Listings

Here’s the problem for me, this is a list of people to cold-call.  When I signed up for the program, I thought I was well qualified to be an agent because of my sales background.  I had won many contests and had wonderful relationships with my clients.  The problem for me is that I am a face-to face type of person.  I’m not talking about the type of person who will show up at your door unannounced.  I offer my services in a laid back unthreatening way.  I am not a pushy sales person.  Honestly I don’t even like the title “salesperson.”  I prefer to see myself as a consultant who is available to help a customer navigate down the road to a new home or out of the home they own now.

I have spoken with several agents in the office.  The training program is helpful in that you are shown several ways to possibly find new clients.  The idea being that if you touch on each area each week, something is bound to come through for you.  Basically it’s a numbers game.  It’s a starting off point that none of the agents I spoke with use.

I have given an honest effort towards making cold-calls.  For me, it has felt like a huge waste of time.  It is the amount of research and general downtime needed before calls are made that really get to me more than anything.  Lets say you want to call expired listings.  You have to look up the listings, cross-reference for a phone number, cross-reference that with the do not call registry, and then make the call.  In 23 calls I made, I got two people who answered.  One person no longer owned their home, the other was just not interested.  It had taken me almost three hours of cross-referencing before I could make the calls.  All other numbers on that list were either fax machines, answering machines that were full or disconnected numbers.  This is what I call a huge waste of time.

I am in the process of overhauling the way I do business.  I prefer to go with my gut.  I know what works best for me.  I want to come across as the authentic, honest person I am.  I don’t want to appear robotic and seeming to talk from a script.  When I make cold-calls, I never know what to say.  I seem clumsy and inefficient.  The response is bad and then my self-esteem goes down the tubes.  I really love real estate and know I would be a great person to work with.  That being said, I am throwing out all the techniques aimed at spinning your wheels.

I am going for the human approach.  This means that I will be going in to places such as attorney’s offices, caterers and senior living centers to see if there is an opportunity to pass out some cards.  I am also doing some more volunteering.  I would prefer to spend my time doing something I love and hope to spark some interest along the way than be stuck in a chair for hours making calls to uninterested people who get overloaded with calls from agents every day.

I’ll get back with you and let you know how this new way of going about business works out for me.  In the meantime, as always, thanks for stopping by. 🙂

 
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Posted by on September 23, 2012 in career, lifestyle, opinion, people, personal

 

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Stay Focused and Confident in Your Pursuit Toward Success

I was in the office yesterday and had a one on one meeting with my manager.  We went over what I had been working on for the last week.  I talked to her about what worked, what didn’t, we discussed how to tweak my approach and  what my goals would be moving forward.  I spoke openly about feeling like I had hit the wall and felt stuck.  I don’t know what it is about speaking your mind, but being honest about where my head was at seemed to help me shake off that stuck feeling.  I felt propelled forward and re-energized to make another stab at the process.

After the meeting, I was talking with one of the agents who has been working a few months longer than me and is staying quite busy.  She provided me with some encouragement and a chance to hold her beloved lucky charm (a gold four-leaf clover with an emerald on it laying loosely inside a black mesh bag).  The agent swears by the luck associated with this charm whenever she needs a boost.  I had held the charm one time before and felt that my luck had improved as well.  Who knows what the true power of that charm is, but it does help in recreating a sense of confidence.  No matter, I won’t knock it (I’m willing to try anything that gives me a feeling of increased power over my situation.

My day continued on and as luck would have it, I picked up the opportunity to host two open houses that some other agents were planning, a slot taking floor calls (from an overloaded agent) and went to a showing where I picked up two possible clients.  Say what you will, but my luck was changing.

By the end of the day, my dismal mood had changed dramatically.  I went from feeling as though I had hit bottom to a renewed sense of purpose and determination.  This is the life of a Real Estate Agent.  The lesson that I learned was that you can’t let your emotions get the best of you.  Keep moving and try different techniques to get to your goal.  Eventually you will see a shift from your effort and it usually doesn’t take long at all for things to look brighter again.

 
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Posted by on September 6, 2012 in advice, career, job, life, opinion, people, thoughts

 

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Confidence in the Economy

When I decided to pursue a career as a Real Estate Consultant, I have to admit that I was nervous about the state of the housing market.  I knew we were in better shape than the last few years. I had witnessed several friends who had been working in real estate jump ship.  As always, I have been following the public listings for homes that were for sale and did see a decrease in the amount of foreclosures as well as an increase in the sale price for a good quality home.  It also appeared that these good homes were hitting the market and were being bought up almost as fast as they were being listed.  But, what did I know, I was new to real estate and these were just observations by an amateur.

On Friday, I was in the office and could not believe the hustle and bustle of people moving in and out of the office.  The place was literally packed with people attending meetings to close on the sale of a home.  There was a constant flow of activity.  Each conference room was filled with agents, clients, and representatives.  There was paperwork being signed and hands being shook as keys were exchanged and people congratulated each other.  This went on all day.  As soon as a conference room emptied out, a new group of people entered the room and the process began again.

There has been so many stories about where the housing market is at.  I have heard so much doom and gloom and had bought into so much of the hype.  What I learned that day in the office was that there seems to be a silver lining.  The housing market is not the same as it was before the market collapsed, but from my perspective, there is movement which is more substantial than I had realized coming into the real estate field.

I have been talking with some of the agents in the office to get their view on the housing market.  The biggest challenge that many of the agents seem to be facing is the lack of homes being listed.  Apparently there is an increase in the amount of buyers who have been approved for a loan and are ready to buy a home.  Homes in good shape going up for sale at a well listed price are receiving multiple offers within days of hitting the market.  This is a great sign that there is movement in the housing sector and that the future looks a bit more promising than what I had originally thought.

If you are a Seller, if you are thinking of selling your home, now is a great time to put your home on the market.  If you are a Buyer, make sure you are pre-approved so that you can make that offer.  Homes are selling quickly and you don’t want to lose out on your dream home when you find it.

 
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Posted by on July 25, 2012 in career, life, real estate, thoughts

 

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