When I sit down with new agents for training and we start delving into the “meat and potatoes” of getting their business set up, almost every single person is extremely disappointed when I tell them it could take them six months to a year to set up the pipeline of transactions.
New agents are so excited, so motivated and so ready to prove that they can be a success — it is a breath of fresh air when they walk into the room.
Seasoned agents should take note and always have a new agent in their toolbox to help them remember why they sell and renew their passion for working in the industry.
So what is a new agent to do? Here is my recommended course of action:
Use old-school business tactics such as setting up your sphere of influence, handwritting cards and picking up the phone. You do not need to pay an industry guru big bucks to tell you that being a nice and thoughtful human will help you find success.
Who do you talk to? Past co-workers, neighbors, alumni, the business owners you frequent often, the big box store cashier that is bagging up your groceries.
Be proud that you are a new agent, and shout it from the rooftops.
Finally, one announcement will not be enough. Make sure to remind everyone that you are an agent consistently. Almost everyone knows a handful of agents. You want to be the one they think of first.
Become an expert
The thing that scares me most when I sit down with new agents is the lack of training. You need to make it a priority to learn your craft. This means you need to practice, practice, practice. Practice creating market reports for free for your friends and family (even if they do not want to sell).
Read industry-related news on a local, state and national level. Shadow seasoned agents during their sessions with contracts and clients when you can.
That heavy packet of industry information your broker handed you — please read it! Sign up for any available systems and tech training that your association has to offer.
Don’t call yourself a marketing or housing expert if you have only had your license the length of time it takes a frappuccino from Starbucks to melt.
Consumers will ask how long you have been in the industry and who you work with. Be prepared with honest answers, and make sure to connect with a seasoned agent to mentor you.
Mentorships can set the right rookie on a path to quick success if they are willing to learn.
Be willing to go the extra mile
Work open houses, work desk duty, ask for old lead lists that seasoned agents are neglecting for a referral fee if any workout. Be willing to work rental transactions.
Do not just sit on your hands and wait for a million dollar house listing to fall into your lap — it does not happen but once in great while.
Stay hungry, but do not drive your loved ones nuts
It is easy to be busy in real estate, but not so easy to maintain healthy relationships with your family and friends if you do not set appropriate boundaries and expectations. Clients do not care about family events if you have to break promises and waste time.
My best advice is to be patient. This doesn’t happen overnight.
Take this opportunity in your career to do some of the things you will not have time for later. Attend open houses and walk and research neighborhoods you are interested in.
Take seasoned agents to breakfast or lunch, and learn. Read and absorb as much as you can. Stay with it, and work hard — and you will find success.
One final note, this 2017 spring market is going to be incredibly competitive. Even top producers are going to have to raise the bar of their sales game to stay on task with goals.
After six months of working on your own full time, if you have not gained any traction, you may want to consider joining a team for a while to keep active.
By day, Rachael Hite helps agents develop their business. By night, she’s tweeting and blogging for listingdepot.com.