This month the Active Rain staff has asked us to think about our early experiences as real estate professionals back when we were newbies, and share some of the wisdom we have learned along the way in hopes that it might be helpful to newer agents.
What do you wish you had known the very first year you were in the business that cost you lost business or income?
I wish I had known--and believed--that I wouldn't die if I followed up leads more quickly and more often. It wasn't a matter of not being told, it was my belief that I was bothering someone. It took me far too many years to get over this mental roadblock. When you come from a position of offering assistance, helping, it takes away the self-centered fear.
Was there ever a time you questioned whether you had made the right choice of being a real estate agent? What events caused you to stick with it and succeed?
I have never questioned whether being a real estate agent is the right choice for me. Way back in the 1970s I bought my first house and then took real estate classes to figure out what I had done! After the first course I felt comfortable that I had done a wise thing. After the second, third and subsequent classes I knew I had found a career that resonated with me.
For personal reasons, I didn't get my license until the early 1990s, but knew for 20 years that's what I wanted to do. Not for a moment have I regretted it.
What are 3 things you have learned along the way that have positively affected you and helped improve your real estate business?
Three things that helped shape my real estate career in a positive way are:
- Having a mentor. Even before I had my license, as an unlicensed assistant to a top producer, I watched what worked, I learned the forms, I learned what often concerned buyers and sellers, I learned how to look for solutions, I learned about structuring a day
- Joining a coaching program. After a handful of years of comfortable success, I was introduced to a coaching program that really resonated with me. I guess I was ready for the next step, because I joined and stayed with them for 3 marvelous years. These were great years of both professional and personal growth. I hired a virtual assistant to free up some of my time; I found 3 role play/accountability partners with whom to practice scripts and get comfortable answering the hard questions. (Two of them I'm still in contact today.) Through the coaching program came my big break-away:
- Setting big, audacious goals. Instead of playing a careful game, achieving every goal, all the time, I'm no longer afraid to take a chance and to set big, stretch goals. I might not make them every time, but I come close.
Over the years I've learned it is much more satisfying to me to live big than to live small, to take calculated risks without being consumed with the fear of failure. I am living happier!