How to be a Better Business Owner
This is going to strike a nerve and I hope it does, because it is something that needs to be discussed in the industry. The failure rate in the real estate industry is extremely high. Throughout my 16 years I have witnessed a near revolving door of agents coming in, and then they are gone a few months later.
I have seen agents that have come into the business with great ideas and poof, they’re no longer around. I have seen agents come in who were not so confident and boom, gone. I have also seen agents who were seasoned fade away. While I helped grow one of the most profitable market centers through recruiting and training, I saw this up-close and personal.
Why is this happening?
Through my own personal journey, talking with top agents, coaches and managers in the industry, we agreed on one point in particular. Coincidentally it is the same reasons 4 out of 5 small business fail. And that reason? Lack of Business Management Experience.
This one piece of knowledge is not typically taught in any pre-license class or there isn’t much emphasis on it. Yes, most franchises have a business planning clinic but that is far from the same thing. To truly understand what it takes to be successful in this business you must have some vision from the management level of your own business.
Managing your business through impactful planning
Once you are able to create and track your goals and action plans you will start to be able to build a time management schedule. You will also start to make additional plans on how to achieve the required number of contacts and appointments. By tracking these numbers, you will be able to see if you are off course and then adjust as needed. Finally, it is the management level that provides accountability. This one piece is often overlooked and not part of an agent’s regiment.
Coaching has several benefits. One of those benefits is accountability. When you are reporting your activities and progress to another person and have to remain accountable, you become more successful. If you are not held accountable, then it is very easy to slip away from doing the required activities.
But seeing that many agents do not have this level of accountability built into their own business, they are set up for failure from the beginning.
Managing your finances responsibly
You are also set up for failure when you avoid discussing and managing finances. I have witnessed, and have been guilty of it as well, getting trapped by the burden of tax payments. It is easy to do if there is not discipline. Think about it, you receive a $10,000 commission check. It is easy to use that to play catch up, go on vacation and do additional marketing, etc.
But if you are not disciplined and putting a predetermined amount away with each check, then you may not have enough when it comes time to pay quarterlies. This will cause a larger payment and potential penalties at the end of the year. You must understand from day one that the $10,000 you received as a commission check is NOT a paycheck.
Understanding finances is also another duty of the management level of your business. Forecasting and Budgets are things that MUST be done. Successful agents and teams do this. Why? Because it is crucial to sustain their existence. You must know how much money you have coming in, how much you need, what your progress to your goals are and a slew of other things which are needed.
What’s the cure?
With anything that is negative there is a positive. So you can fix this right now. Starting today, take a look at your numbers, your business plan and track it. Are you on track? What adjustments are needed? You can track your numbers with a spreadsheet or a system like More GCI. This will allow you to see what is needed to achieve your goal, set an action plan to accomplish it, track it to see any negative gaps and make adjustments as needed.
Yes, a good manager will track your progress. A good manager will also hold you accountable to do the required tasks to reach the goals. Ask yourself this one question:
How much time do I spend working ON my business, not IN my business?
Be honest… You need to spend time working on your business as a manager, as the captain, as the pilot. It is only when you truly understand what is needed that you can make a plan to do it and then track your progress.
So there you have it. That is the one simple thing that you can do to fix your business and become a top producer. One does not simply drive to the bottom of Mt. Everest and start climbing. There is a ton of preparation that goes in to it. It’s a difficult journey just to reach base camp.
It reminds me of the old saying, Failure to Plan is Planning for Failure. Plan your business. Understand what is needed. Do it. Track it. Adjust as needed. It is simple to do but many agents ignore this one step. But if you can master this, you will master the business because you own a business!
Starting today, begin to look at your business through different eyes for just a few hours per week. Make goals each week. Figure out from your business tracker how many appointments you must run per week, how many contacts your need to make per week, what your GCI needs to be and how many transaction you need to do. Then do it and track it.
I can tell you this. When agents start to see their progress, it is motivating. It can also be de-motivating if you are not doing the required work. But when you are, seeing it come to life it will breathe a new life into you and make you more determined and focused. This determination and focus will lead you to great things and make you unstoppable.
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