The Have and Have Nots in Real Estate (part 4)

Welcome back to Mike Ferry TV. It is the week of October 26th. Another month is done … completed … how did you do? Did you use the 3×5 cards that I talk about all the time? Did you have a goal for how many listings and how many sales? Did you have a goal for the amount of days you’re going to prospect and what you’re trying to accomplish and do? Because if you use the simplicity of those 3×5 cards for the month of November coming up, you’re probably going to have more success than you’ve had in the past.

I was in Seattle, Washington, many, many years ago … one of the big developer builders was introduced to me … a very successful man … and he asked me to come and speak for about 30 agents that were selling … these were individual Real Estate professionals like yourself that he had kind of wrapped his arm around … and they were selling his beautiful custom homes that he had built. He built hundreds and hundreds of homes.

So inside one of his beautiful model homes, he had me do a seminar, which was kind of fun because it was in the foyer of the house and then the foyer was big enough to set up 30 chairs for 30 agents, and then he had refreshments served for the break, and I stood actually on the staircase and, you know, it was just a unique little seminar … and one of the questions that came up right off the bat when I started was, “Mike, what is the difference between the people that are producing up here and all the rest?”

And I made a comment, which many people I don’t think actually understood when I said it, but I’ve talked about it time and time again so I want to share it with you now. The people that are working at this level of productivity are working 11 months versus 8 months out of the year. Some of you are going to respond by saying, “Well, I work 12 months a year.” Do you really? Are you really putting in 250 … 260 … 270 days a year of actual work?

You know, I keep looking at it on an annual basis, our business, and here we are now at the end of October, we’re headed into November, December, we should be doing our business planning and preparing for the next year. We should have this plan pretty much in place by this time.

And then I’m going to say to you, “How many days do you have scheduled?” We went for many, many years working with agents that were working 180 days a year and doing good production. I kept saying, “180?” You know, I think based on the U.S. government, I can’t speak for our friends from Canada, I think our U.S. government says there’s about 265 to 275 workdays in a year. How many days are you putting in? And if you divide that by 12, you’re going to be working about 20, 21 workdays a month. So I said, “Are you putting in 11 months or 8?” Because 8 would be 175 to 180, 185 days and 11 would be 250 to 260 and there is a direct correlation between the number of days I participate … participate meaning I’m working a schedule in this business and the difference between working 160, 180 days.

So as we look at the differences again between the haves and have-nots, the first thing I want to say to you is a successful Real Estate person is aiming to put in a full 8 hours of productive and administrative work per day. You know, with the advent of technology being such an important part of what we do, and with the advent of technology speeding up so many things and technology can hold on to so many thoughts for us and it can store information and we can retrieve it quickly … with the advent of technology, a lot of people are working less than they would have otherwise.

But, see, technology is not going to solve a time management problem if you have one. Technology is not going to solve the prospecting problem. You still have to talk to the people if the technology furnishes the lead. Technology is not going to prequalify the person for you or do your lead follow-up, and if technology is doing your lead follow-up, how do you know if they’re accepting the lead follow-up that you’re sending out? Technology’s generally not going to show the property for you. Yeah, we can show virtually, which is use of technology, but we’re showing the property involved in that process to get the Buyer involved. We can make a virtual Listing Presentation, but we’re still making the presentation. So technology often leads us to working less versus putting in the time.

If you’ve ever had a real job, and most of us had, you know, most of the companies and organizations pay you for a 35 to 40 to 45-hour workweek. Can you imagine if everybody that we know in Real Estate, starting with you, put in 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, 40 hours a week, where they were really spending their time looking for business, they were really following up on the leads, they were honestly prequalifying every Buyer and Seller, they had a target everyday to go on one appointment, whether it be showing property or listing property. If you put in 8 hours a day, you’re going to succeed in almost every case. Successful people put in the time required to make it happen.

But then I wrote down the second thought for today on the successful people … they eliminate the options for not producing. There’s so many options that get in the way of being productive in Real Estate. Those options, of course, really are production killers. I mean they knock us right off the track for the goals that we’ve set … and the options are everything from spending too much time on social media to spending too much time at Starbucks around the corner, to spending 2 hours for lunch, which probably is not necessary … to not following the schedule that you have, to not doing the lead follow-up to get the appointments that are waiting for you to go on.

See, the options are there … if we can eliminate some of the options by being very stringent and disciplined with our schedule, everything else in the day works better than it would be if we didn’t follow and take those options which we often take.

I wrote down the third thought for today … the successful, the haves versus the have-nots, they make their decisions quickly all the time. As the day progresses, and as their life progresses, and as their business progresses, they’re making decisions faster. One of my mentors and, you know, I actually had him as a consultant, a coach, way back in the 70s was Dr. Gunther Klaus … and Gunther used to say the same thing. We’re paid to make decisions fast. So if you make two decisions a day and you’re wrong on one of the two, you’re at 50%, but you’ve only made one decision. But if I can get you to make 10, 15, 20 decisions a day and half of them work and half don’t, now if there’s 20, you’ve made 10 good decisions to build your business.

He used to say all the time, “It’s not whether you’re right or wrong. It’s can you make a decision quickly because you can always have a chance to recover.” But if you’re only making one decision a day … should I follow my schedule today? I hope to shout … Should I get on my phone and call my Past Clients? Yes. Should I be following up on my leads? Do it now. Those are decisions we have to make every day, and the quicker we make those decisions, the faster our business progresses and the more business we do.

The fourth thought for the day, and this is the tough one … the haves, the successful people, are willing to confront people when necessary and accept confrontation on a nonemotional reality-based level. Confrontation is not an argument, not a quarrel, not a battle, not a fight. Confrontation is not yelling and screaming. Confrontation is when you’re facing the reality of what has to be done for you to move your business forward or for you to move a transaction forward.

Maybe you have to confront the mortgage lender or loan officer? Maybe you have to confront the other agent? Maybe you have to confront the Buyer or the Seller to get the paperwork signed and move the transaction forward? So confrontation becomes nothing more than asking a question. “Mr. and Mrs. Smith, I’ve noticed you haven’t signed the loan documents and we’ve asked you twice to get those signed. Can we get those signed today so we can get the transaction closed?”

“Well, you’re really pushing me too hard.”

“No. I’m asking you can we get the loan document signed today? You want it to close on time, correct?”

“Well, yes.”

“Then we have to take the next step.”

So the questions are the confrontation versus any verbal battle that we’ll be involved in. And it’s a tough one because most of us, we’re not good at asking questions. That’s number one. Second, we’re sometimes skeptical to confront because we’re afraid they may get mad and the transaction could blow up and it could. Let me ask you this question … if a transaction’s sitting and not moving forward and we don’t confront it, is the Seller going to be happy? Is the Buyer going to be happy? Are you going to get your commission check that you’ve worked so hard to earn?

The last point for today on this particular series because this is week 4 of the series of the haves and the have-nots. It’s something that I probably should talk about more and when I do, people get angry, so you might as well make this the last point so if you’re going to get mad, get mad about this point … the haves in Real Estate respond to correspondence in a timely manner and understand the value of timely communication.

If you get an email, you open it and you delete it or you answer it or you move it to someplace else. If you get a text, you read it and you respond. If your phone rings, you answer it. If you get a voicemail, you return the call. And I would say to you the biggest challenge our industry faces is those four things I just mentioned … corresponding, communicating in a timely manner.

What are you afraid of? What are you trying to avoid in not looking at the email? “Well, Mike, I get too many emails.” We all get too many emails. I get several hundred a day. I understand we get too many, but I still go through them and keep up-to-date with them.

“Well, Mike, I get too many people calling me.” I get people calling me every day. I still have to answer the phone, or I have to listen to the voicemail, and I have to communicate and correspond. It’s our job. It’s our J-O-B … our job to communicate in a timely and valuable manner to the prospects and clients we work with.

So, you know, I’m going to continue my research as to the difference between the haves and the have-nots. I’ve got a bunch more points here, but we’ve run out of time on this particular series. We’re going to start November by working on your business plan. We’re going to work a couple weeks on the business plan. We’re going to go through it together. We’re going to make it a plan that you can achieve and accomplish in 2021.

Because 2021 … I don’t care what the naysayers say … is going to be a great year for those people that participate, that are engaged, that are doing their job because no matter what happens to 2021, good, bad, right, or wrong … there’s going to be several million Real Estate transactions taken and that is in the worst of times … and in the good times 4.5 to 5 to 5.5 million and we just want to see how many of those you wanted to participate in … and we’re here to help you make that happen.

Look forward to seeing you next week. Thanks for today.

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!