Real estate is one of the most competitive industries in the world. When the market is bad, we have to fight to make a living and help our clients. When the market is great, we see a significant influx of new agents and client loyalty decreases. The competitive nature of our sales-focused world doesn’t change with the seasons. It’s constant, and often, overwhelming.

How do agents maintain success through the ebb and flow of the markets, conditions and business of real estate? Here are three things that successful agents do. 

Define your own success

The biggest mistake that we make is that we compare ourselves to others. It can be an exhausting process to look up the ladder and see other people doing far better than you. Our first reaction is to spend more money in marketing, lead generation or networking. We just have to fast track ourselves to the higher levels.

I would argue that most of us get into real estate for time and money. It can provide us with the most money for the least amount of time. Then, you realize that the more you earn, the less time you have for the things you truly love. It’s a vicious cycle that can burn agents out, make them quit the business and stress brokerages beyond belief. 

The way to save yourself from the turmoil is to define your own success. Don’t let your broker do it for you. Don’t let the audiobook or YouTube video define your success. You have to determine what you need to earn, how much time you will devote to it and how to stand in confidence in your version of success.

The only person who should demand more out of you is you.

Value your time more than your money

We want to “win the business.” It is natural, and of course, we don’t get paid if we don’t win some clients. For these reasons, we find ourselves acting out of our need for a sale, rather than providing a service. We will waste an afternoon on a potential sale that never happens before we will take half an hour to have a deep and meaningful conversation to qualify those clients.

If there is something I’m certain of, it’s that I can always make more money and that I will never get time back. Successful agents let go of the “maybe” clients, and focus on the “yes” clients. Work to build a pipeline of “yes” people instead of people who need convincing or nurturing. Of course, that is an ideal.

Don’t get me wrong, we will always have to overcome objections. That’s part of the game. Agents who spend a staggering bulk of their time with “yes” clients will attract more clients.

More volume, higher average sale price and a bigger team aren’t always the best means to your end. What we fail to realize is the return on that time investment may not be profitable. 

Focus on using your time wisely instead of chasing a commission. 

Practice consistency

From your process to list a property to lead generation to social media posts, consistency makes a big difference.

Consistency keeps the mini-celebrations for getting a new listing, a single closing and the notion of “I worked hard, and I deserve it” out of the picture. Don’t get me wrong, you probably do deserve it, but we are talking about being consistent in our business. That means, no matter what happens, you know what you have to do, and you do those things.

The people who win in the real estate industry maintain consistency for a long period of time and only deviate from their process for a predetermined standard of events. Meaning, their schedule will change for a particular caliber of client, family emergency or rare event that favors higher service over anything else. Otherwise, they stick to their revenue-generating activities.

It may seem like this should be a list of tactics or strategies to get more sales, but the truth is that we have to operate on a deeper level to create legacy in this business. By defining your own version of success, keeping a strong value on your time and being consistent, you will win in the long term. 

The tactics might get you a win this month, but you will be right back at the start when that settles. 

This means the business you have and the life you lead will, ultimately, be how you maintain your success as a real estate agent. It has to be both.

Kevin Hoover is a Realtor with eXp Realty – Myrtle Beach. Follow him on Facebook or Twitter.

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