Good news! As you wind down the year, you have only two tasks left: putting a ribbon around 2016 and putting pins in place for a strong start to 2017. To facilitate this wrap-up-and-start-up mentality, have a look at these 10 great strategies.

  • Before the end of the year, personally contact everyone in your database.
  • Remember that clutter slows you down -- as you prepare for 2017, you should be at your peak level of efficiency.
  • Get in the habit of going over your finances on a weekly and monthly basis from now on.

Good news! As you wind down the year, you have only two tasks left:

  1. Put a ribbon around 2016.
  2. Put the pins in place for a strong start in 2017.

To facilitate this wrap-up-and-start-up mentality, have a look at these 10 great strategies.

When you put them all together, you will be in great shape to take advantage of your successes from 2016 and move forward into an even more powerful New Year.

1. Contact your personal gold mine

No doubt a significant portion of your sales results this year came from your list of past clients and center of influence. Don’t let the year go by without one more contact.

Before the end of the year, be sure to personally contact everyone in your database. Contact all of your past clients and your center of influence, and let them know you are thinking of them.

This is the only time of the year you don’t need an excuse to pick up the phone and call them. Answer any questions they might have about the real estate market.

Note: This strategy is not about sending Christmas cards. It’s about a personal phone call so that you are touching base and reinforcing the rapport that existed when you first added them to your list. Rekindle that relationship.

2. Don’t leave any stones left unturned

Pull out all of your old leads and call each of them one more time. Even if the leads are two years old, you never know what might have changed since that hot lead became cold. This action never fails to turn up one or two excellent opportunities.

They might not have been waiting for your call, but following this approach often yields surprising results:

“I was calling to see if you ever bought that home/sold your home?” (Answer: “No, not yet.”)

“No problem. I’m here to help you. So tell me, what’s the next step for you?”

Dust off those old files, and give them a call — there will definitely be some “nuggets” in there.

3. Do a three-part purge

The end of the year is a perfect time to do a cleanup. Three areas for your attention:

  1. Your office
  2. Your clothes closet
  3. Your car

Remember that clutter slows you down — as you prepare for 2017, be at your peak level of efficiency.

Block off one day near the end of the year, and throw all that unneeded “stuff” into a dumpster. It’s a very liberating activity.

4. Take time for a health check

Did your commitment to staying healthy decline a bit over the last 12 months? It’s natural that your exercise regimen, your eating habits and your sleeping habits might have suffered as a result of being busy.

Rarely do you hear, “I don’t have time to look after myself.” But it does happen, doesn’t it?

When you’re laying out your plans for next year, make sure you upgrade how you look after yourself.

When you’re at your best, so are your business results. One depends on the other. 

5. Visit your money

Speaking of health, how about your financial health? The year-end is a great time to do a wrap up of your financial situation. Have a look at your income, your assets and your indebtedness. In other words — visit your money.

For you to move forward and have a highly successful 2017 financially, you need to know exactly where you stand right now. Then you can make adjustments so that next year will be even better.

Also, get in the habit of going over your finances on a weekly and monthly basis from now on. No excuses. Knowing your financial status is the first step in getting to where you want to go.

6. Figure out where you are now

This strategy is all about measuring your final sales results for 2016. Getting to the next level always begins with a starting point.

Fill in the blanks below for your starting point as of Dec. 31, 2016 (your last 12 months’ results). Here are the fundamentals for what you achieved in 2016:

Listing Appointments  _______________________

Listings Taken _______________________

Listings Sold _______________________

Buyer Sales  _______________________

Closings  _______________________

Commissions Earned $ _____________________

Use the above six measurements to help you establish your new targets for 2017 (see strategy No. 8 below).

7. Figure out your why

Of all the strategies in this list, this is quite possibly the most important one. It’s all about your personal motivation. How motivated you are on a day-to-day basis spells the difference between success and failure.

You need to be clear on your personal goals at all times. This starts with having a written list

Use this affirmation: “My personal goals are my compass to success.”

As a starting point, write out two simple goals for 2017 for each of the following three categories:

1. My Health ________________________________________________________________


2. My Family ________________________________________________________________


3. My Financial Future _________________________________________________________


Be sure to review this list every week. A proven approach is to put it in your schedule and do so on a regular basis. When it’s on paper and visual, it will be much more powerful.

8. Know where you are going

This strategy is an extension of the “Where am I now?” review (see strategy No. 6 above). This is the quantitative part of 2017.

It’s important to have an overall year-end target and to measure your progress toward that target. Fill in the blanks below. The answers will tell you where you want to end up at the end of 2017.

Make them “realistic with a stretch”:

Listing Appointments _______________________

Listings Taken  _______________________

Listings Sold _______________________

Buyer Sales _______________________

Closings _______________________

Commissions Earned $ _____________________

9. Make a 90-day plan

To be prepared for a fast start in 2017, have a solid year-beginning strategy. This approach begins with setting short-term targets for each of January, February and March.

Don’t overanalyze what you are going to do. Keep it simple. Use these two criteria:

January/February/March Total

  1. Number of contacts per day (20 days/month) _____________________             
  2. Number of transactions per month ___________________________

Your year-beginning strategy is all about doing the right things every day. It starts with identifying and contacting your leads on a day-to-day basis.

A simple yardstick would be to contact a minimum of 20 people daily (prospects, leads, lead follow-up). Do this every day and you will be highly successful.

10. Get in the turn-me-loose mindset

Enthusiasm is a great thing. Especially in the world of real estate sales. The “turn me loose” mindset is significantly more effective when someone is holding you tightly accountable. Accountability is the difference between just getting by and overachievement.

There is nothing wrong with using someone to hold you accountable. 

“If you could do it on your own, you would’ve done it already.” – Harvey Brooker, Entrepreneur

Put your ego aside, and recognize that you are capable of greater things, especially on the days you don’t feel like it. Find accountability, whether it be an accountability partner or a coach.

Congratulations! You are now positioned to close out the chapter on this year of your life and start a new chapter that promises even greater successes in 2017.

One final quick reminder of encouragement: Don’t make the mistake of reflecting on failures, under achievements and mistakes committed in 2016. Those are all in the past. Looking over your shoulder does not provide any added value.

As the expression goes: “There is a reason why the rearview mirror is so much smaller than the windshield.”

You are perfectly poised to move forward to even greater successes. Enjoy the journey, and always be growing. That’s what got you to where you are now — and where you are going next. Onward and upward; no excuses.

Bruce Keith is a speaker, sales coach and author at Bruce Keith Results. You can follow him on Twitter or Facebook.

Email Bruce Keith

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