This is it! You did it! You got your license, picked your brokerage, ordered your business cards — you’re ready for anything, right? Hopefully! We do love that enthusiasm and the kinetic energy we see when someone is new and eager and filled to the brim with potential and possibility.
1. Bottle it. By that, I mean I want you to sit with that enthusiasm a little and really make a good snapshot in your memory of what it feels and looks like, because that will be important when you later have those “remember why you started” moments. We all have them.
- Commitment to yourself and your family. Have a family meeting to discuss your new business and future. Talk about what your goals are and what their goals are so that everyone can be on the same page as you move forward.
- Vision board. You may want to consider creating a personal and even a family vision board so that you can capitalize on your new dreams and goals and help make them a sooner rather than later reality.
- Tracking charts. We’re a big fan of using tracking charts to help agents stay the course toward their goals and give them a visual representation of the daily, weekly and monthly tasks that will help them achieve success.
2. Get in a business mindset. Next, I want you to understand right from the start that you are not “just an agent” or “salesperson” or “associate.” Nope. You’re a businessperson. As such, you need to dive into all that it means to be a businessperson, even the less than glamorous stuff like bookkeeping and marketing and planning and understanding the legal documents you are getting people to sign.
- Create a real estate-specific business plan. We created a business plan for agents that addresses how to get now business and future business and create financial freedom. There’s no cost to you — it’s my gift to download. It’s important as you are starting out to get a handle on the marketing and budgeting, but also on how you can start putting the work in that will drive revenue as quickly as possible.
- Have a meeting with your broker. I want you to think of your broker as your business partner, especially in these early days. They are there to answer your questions, help guide you to best business practices, help you steer clear of any legal issues, and support you on your path to success. Be sure that you are creating and cultivating clear and open lines of communication.
3. Commit to Prospecting. Then, I want you to do the one thing that many (most) new agents are reluctant to do in those early days, and that is to get phenomenal at prospecting. Not just so-so, not “good enough,” but phenomenal. If you can punch through the fear of prospecting and picking up the phone and talking to strangers — well then, there’s no ceiling to what you can accomplish.
Prospecting, specifically phone prospecting, is a practiced skill set. To get good at it, I’d like you to consider these things:
- Make your commitment about building relationships, not getting an appointment. When your only goal is to get an appointment, that shines through like a new dime, and not in a good way. Your commitment should be to ask questions to discover what a homeowner’s needs are, determine how you can help, and then direct the conversation for an opportunity for you to meet with them in person to better discuss how you can provide that help.
- Don’t let fear have you. “Cold calling” is a scary term. It conjures up a feeling of pushy salespeople and unwelcome intrusions and leaves most people just afraid to pick up the phone. Listen, fear is natural. The best way to combat it is to practice and come from a place of service, not sales. The more you pick up the phone and genuinely talk to people, the easier it will become.
- Use “dialogues,” not scripts. Leave the canned speeches and memorized scripts. They don’t work, sound salesy, and are anything but authentic. Instead, give yourself a track to follow such as:
- introduce yourself
- give a reason for calling
- compliment them
- ask questions
- build rapport
- invite them to take action
One powerful key to communication is to listen more than you speak. There’s an old saying that God gave us two ears and one mouth, and we should use them in that proportion! You’ve got this!
4. Feeling overwhelmed and confused is normal. Don’t beat yourself up for feeling overwhelmed, stressed or even a little “stupid” by the thought of all you still don’t know about this business. I want you to think about when you were a kid and you were first trying to learn algebra. Or if you have kids and they are trying to learn it. No one is born knowing how to do algebra, right? It’s like anything else, it takes time to learn, and for sure, you’re going to screw it up sometimes. You’re not going to come out of the gate a master real estate agent. But no one does. You’re not stupid, you’ve got this. Give yourself time.
5. Don’t wait to get good. Or skilled, or perfect. The best thing you can do for your business right now is to commit every single day to having two conversations: one with someone who wants to buy a house and one with someone who wants to sell a house. That’s it. Whether that is picking up the phone, or a conversation at lunch, or you plop yourself down at a local coffee shop with an “Ask me about real estate” sign — just get in the habit of having two conversations a day with people who might be interested in listing or selling. The good and skilled part will follow, I promise.
Lastly, I just want to tell you to keep looking for the possibilities. I love when I see brand new agents who don’t listen to the naysayers or the people who say why their dreams aren’t possible, and just jump in and try everything. What’s crazy is that sometimes that is all it takes to far surpass agents who have been playing it super safe for decades. Be the kind of agent and human being who approaches each day willing to try new strategies or new tools with purpose. They all won’t be successful, but you will be because you are open to the possibilities. If we’re not making mistakes in this business or in life, we’re not trying and we’re not growing.
I am not going to sugarcoat anything. This business takes work, organization, passion and time. It’s got unlimited possibilities, though, especially when you lean in and don’t let doubt or others define what you can do or how far you can go. Ready to soar? Lean in. I’m here if you need help.