• So many agents have come before you; learn from their mistakes.
  • Most second-year agents spend more time practicing in year two than they did in their inaugural year.
  • Most business comes from folks you already know -- your lead generation activity should reflect that.

I train new agents. My ultimate mission is to move the needle on the National Association of Realtors’ attrition statistics.

One of my favorite questions to ask agents in their second year (or third, or fourth) is: “What would you do differently if you could start over?”

The question falls in the genre of “What advice do you have for agents just starting out?” Experienced agents will find no surprises on this list. New agents can get ahead faster by taking heed.

Here are the top six responses I get when I ask second-year agents what they know now that they wished they had known from day one:

1. Make more calls, and focus the first part of every day on calling

Second-year agents come to terms with the fact that they are in the business of talking to people about real estate. And they start to realize that if they are going to have any stability or predictability in this business, they had better make this the foundation of their business activity.

2. Practice scripts and presentations more

In their second year, most agents recognize that their confidence and conversion are directly related to their ability to know what to say and come across professionally.

And in year two, agents start to recognize that “script” is not a bad word, and the faster they internalize the dialogue, the better. It’s time on task — you do not practice on your clients.

3. Be more direct in asking for business

By year two, most agents recognize that most of their business opportunity is coming from folks they already know. Being indirect with your desire or intent to earn your business is ineffective.

Being more direct builds the pipeline faster. It’s a sales business — ask for the business.

4. Organize your database ASAP

Most agents recognize by year two that they need to do a better job of consistent and effective communication with their database. It’s crucial to have an organized database to generate leads, create a referral business and retain clients.

5. Get up every day, and go to work

Second-year agents recognize that the more they treat their business like a business — and earn flexibility instead of leading with it — the faster they’ll gain solid ground.

6. Spend less money

By year two, most agents have wasted some money, usually because the agent was chasing shiny objects instead of focusing on two or three lead generation techniques (one of those being the agent’s sphere) or the agent wasn’t holding their expenses accountable for results.

Almost every second-year agent I talk with is spending less money the second year and making more money in the process.

Every agent learns tough lessons along the way. Take time to speak with experienced agents and learn from their mistakes.

What would you do differently if you were to start over? What advice do you have for first-year agents? Please share in the comments section below. 

Julie Nelson is the chief success officer at The Nelson Project, Keller Williams Realty in Austin, Texas. You can follow her on YouTube or Twitter

Email Julie Nelson.

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