How Successful Agents are Overcoming Market Obstacles

Welcome back to Mike Ferry TV. It is the week of May 25th. Time is flying by … and the good news is, the difficult times we’ve all been facing from the 1st of March through the end of April are getting better and better. They’re improving … market’s picking up. You’re seeing that in your offices … if you’re working. You’re seeing that in the transactions in your local Board of Realtors.

You know, I keep saying to people that there’s light at the end of the tunnel and the light is getting brighter and brighter in our favor as Real Estate professionals. In fact, I hope that the tunnel is wide enough that as this train comes racing back with Buyers and Sellers, we have enough room to step aside and not get hit by the train.

I had a very interesting conversation this past week. I had … I think it was 45 people on the phone … and we were chatting about the market and how to deal with the market. We were talking about the fact that, you know, it seems to be a very difficult time, not only physically, mentally and emotionally, but it’s a difficult time to get people reengaged in the work as Real Estate professionals. A lot of people really around the 1st of March started backing off the business for fear and those fears were real, so let’s accept that … but they were backing away, and they haven’t come back yet into the business.

So, what I was talking to this group about was the fact that I said to them, “I’m going to say some things that you’re probably not going to like. Now, isn’t that a shock … for Mike Ferry to say something that you may not like? And I am going to say a couple things that some of you may not like because it may touch a nerve or two. It’s like going to the dentist and they’re giving you a shot of Novocain and then they start to do a little bit of drilling and it touches the nerve and, boy, you jump … and you’re not very happy. Well, I’m sorry that at times I’m going to say things that make you not happy, but I’m going to tell you what I think is right … I’m going to tell you what I think is the truth … I’m going to tell you what I think you have to do to be a good Real Estate productive salesperson in these most unusual times that we’re dealing with.”

Now, I have to say this to you. I have been through so much worse in my career than what we are experiencing today … because the truth is … yes, it’s a terrible situation … economically, health-wise … with the people that have suffered and died because of this coronavirus. It’s a terrible situation, but life is still going on and things are still moving forward … and as we’re seeing in the month of May, businesses are opening up. Yes, there’s social distancing. We’re wearing masks … we’re wearing gloves … we’re being careful … we’re disinfecting, but this is going to be our life for a while … so we have to learn to live with the circumstances that we have. In Real Estate, for some reason … we think it’s okay to stick our head in the sand and not do anything and then we think that everybody should feel bad because we’re not doing anything.

“Now, the truth is … nobody is doing what they possibly could do if everything was at this level, yet at the same time,” as I said to this group last week, “why is it that about 10% of the agents are really doing well during this pandemic and 90% are not doing poorly … they’ve disappeared?” You’re seeing that whether you’re a Broker, a Manager or an agent … you’re just seeing agents just vanish … gone. 2007 to 2012 … I don’t know the exact number, but it looks like … looking backwards we went from about 1.3 million agents down to 750,000 in less than 18 months. That is going to probably happen again, although this pandemic … we can probably see the end of it coming. It’s not going to be a 5 year run like we had back in the late 2000s or 2007 to 2012, but we’re behaving, in many times, the same manner.

So … what I talked about last week is … why is it that if I talk to 100 agents, 10 of them are saying, “Mike … I’m really doing fine … I’m doing well … I’m taking listings … I’m making sales … I have closings … I don’t know why the rest of them aren’t”?

So, I started thinking about it a lot … so I’m going to share with you nine thoughts … maybe one or two might play in your mind. Maybe one or two might apply to you, but in watching thousands of agents, which is what I get to do all the time, whether they be in Coaching … or in this case in our virtual events we’re doing … there are certain things taking place that we have to be aware of … and maybe something I can say can either shock you back to the reality of what’s going on or help you step back into the reality of what’s going on … or maybe make you mad so you’re going to prove that I’m wrong. In any case, as long as you’re more productive, everybody wins … Buyers win … Sellers win … you win … your family wins … your Broker wins … everybody wins.

So, no order of importance … here’s nine thoughts that I’ve written down for you …

1) 90% of the agents in the marketplace that you work in have quit the business mentally and physically … and they may not even know that they’ve left.

Well, 10% are working and doing the business because the 90% are doing little to nothing … don’t be one of the 90%. I mean, you know if you’re doing your job. Are you putting in 3 to 4 hours a day of productive work during your home isolation? Are you attempting to put in some time? Are you talking to your Past Clients/Centers of Influence? They’re open to conversations and they’re open to conversations because, as I’ve said in the past, everybody is answering their phone when the phone rings because they’re tired of talking to the wall and talking to their dog. So, you’re going to get a much better response … so don’t be part of the 90%. It starts with the commitment, “I’m not going to be part of the 90%.”

I wrote down …

2) The 90% don’t believe there is business to do … and because of that belief, they’re correct.

Think about that … the majority of agents don’t think there’s any business to be done, and yet, when you look at the Board of Realtors that you’re a part of … when you look at even the company you’re a part of … business is being done all over North America every single day … and it’s being done in substantial volume. But if they don’t believe there’s any business, as you’ve heard me say in the past … when you don’t believe in yourself, the vote is unanimous.

I wrote …

3) They’re often playing what I call the “poor me” game … because they simply refuse to understand that the rules of the games that we’re playing today in Real Estate have changed … and that we all have to play by the same rules.

We’re not calling on For Sale By Owners door-to-door like we used to … can’t do it. Unless you have a 6-foot arm for social distancing, you’re not going to be knocking on doors talking to people. You’re going to be using the phone. You’re going to have to be a lot stronger in your presentation skills. You’re going to have to learn how to make a virtual presentation to a camera. The rules have been changed. We’re all playing by the same rules, but if you don’t think those rules apply to you and you have that “poor me” attitude … guess what? You’re right. Nothing’s going to happen.

I wrote down ..

4) The 90% are living in the past.

Boy, we can’t live in the past. 2012 to 2019 … straight upward trending market … all over North America. 90% haven’t caught on that the world has changed and they haven’t moved forward, so the results are not what they want them to be. Fascinating, isn’t it? We still think it’s 2016. It’s not 2016. The world has changed, and, in most cases, it’s changed on a permanent basis for all of us on how we’re going to operate in Real Estate.

I wrote down …

5) The lack of discipline to fight off the negative thoughts, which everybody has, is what stops you from producing.

Folks … everybody has negative thoughts. You know, we hear about the fact that people are sick … we hear about the fact that people are passing away because of this terrible disease. We worry about ourselves, our family, our friends … it’s called “normal.” The question is … how long are you going to be virtually wrapped up in those negative thoughts? See, if you lacked the discipline to fight off the negative thoughts, the negative thoughts are going to run your life.

6) They’re controlled by the environment versus standing up and taking control of their environment.

I hear this all the time … “Mike, nobody in the office is doing anything. Nobody is doing anything.”

I go, “How do you know? The office has been closed for a couple months.”

“Well, nobody’s doing anything.”

“Well how do you know? You’re not part of anything.” If you’ve been hibernating in your house and talking to yourself and the wall and your dog … you don’t know what’s going on. See, if the environment is controlling you and you’ve lost control of your environment, guess what? Nothing is going to happen.

7) They actually believe that this crisis only applies to them.

I call this a “reversed ego problem.” Instead of saying that I am so much better than everybody, they are saying that they’re so much worse off than everybody else. Folks … you know … those that are unemployed, gosh darn it, that’s a tough situation. Those that can’t get their rent reduced or they can’t get forbearance on their payments … that’s a tough situation. It’s happening to people all over the world all the time … and if you’re thinking this only applies to you as a Real Estate professional, it’s going to be a tough time.

8) They’ve given up on the goals they’ve set for the year, therefore they’ve given up on themselves.

One of the questions that keeps coming up is this … should we lower our expectations as this continues? I’m saying no, you don’t lower your expectations … you raise your standards. You work to improve the quality of what you do every single day.

9) You have to recommit to yourself … you have to recommit to your family … you have to recommit to your clients … and if you don’t do that, nothing is going to change at all.

It’s a tough situation. I wish I could say it was easy. You know, we have employees that have children and they can’t come back to the office to work because the children can’t go to school because the schools are closed … and they can’t have assistance … they can’t have people come into the house because of the obvious coronavirus. I mean, there’s some difficult circumstances everywhere that you go. You know, it doesn’t matter what country … what part of the world … what state … what province you’re in … it’s difficult circumstances. But the question is really very simple … are you going to keep letting the circumstances run your business, your life, your financial life, or your family and yourself, or are you going to take control?

You can say, “Well, I don’t like your message.” Fine … turn it off. I don’t think your turning off my message has any effect on me because it doesn’t … but turning off this message could have a big effect on you. Watch it … every day for the next 3 or 4 days … this message. In fact, watch it 2 or 3 times a day. In fact, if you’re going to get angry, get angry at the person in the mirror because you have an opportunity to do something because most people aren’t taking advantage of the opportunity.

Let me close with a thought … Earl Nightingale … one of my heroes, my mentors … “We can only help the people who want to help themselves.” Earl used to repeat that all the time … we can only help the people that want to help themselves.

We’re here to help. There’s a lot of things we can do. There’s a lot of services we can offer. There’s a lot of free stuff you can get from us if you want to take advantage of it, but for goodness sakes … don’t get mad at your Broker … don’t get mad at your company … don’t get mad at agents in the office … don’t get mad at me. Get mad at the guy or gal in the mirror and then get back to work and do your job. You’re qualified … you have the skills … you can change your mindset and you can certainly do it better than you have in the past.

If you’re not going to finish May strong, let’s make sure we start June really strong … because we can do that … and we can do it starting today. Thanks for watching.

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Mike Ferry is the global leader in real estate coaching and training. Watch Mike each week as he discusses a variety of topics to help real estate agents and brokers. Grow your real estate business by improving your mindset, developing your skills and creating a plan of action to increase your production!

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